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A Warm Wellcome
Posted by: Johanna Jansdotter on 14th Dec 2009 in Inspiration



Brand Identity, product identity, corporate identity. Phrases much used but less often considered in depth. Johanna Jansdotter sheds some light on the 'I' word with the help of the Wellcome Collection.

If you come across the following sentences, then you probably just entered the exhibition IDENTITY: EIGHT ROOMS, NINE LIVES currently held at the Wellcome Collection, London:

Identity is complex.
Some aspects of our identity are essentially permanent; others are subject to change.
Authority's challenge (as to who we are) is easily satisfied with a signature or a PIN number.
For the question, 'who am I, really?' there remains no answer.
But what influences or determines our sense of who we are?

I visited the Identity exhibition and pondered these questions continuously through the eight rooms (but positively more than nine lives).

I stop in front of a bluish form with 'I AM' written in big red letters, and a pen. It asks me - 'left, centre or right? I don't know. Am I left, am I right, all right, nice or just white? Like a guessing game of finding out who you are.

Am I nice?
Do I feel nicer now thinking about it?
Was I not nice before this?
Did I become less nice two seconds ago?
Moreover am I influenced to become or determined to be a nice person?
Nice is a nice word.
Early on we learn that the most important word we should know is our name.

Material things. Do they provide the surroundings with reflections of us?
Home grown tomatoes, an Andy Warhol print, a Charles Eames chair and two pairs of red socks in your drawer. Do they all define who you are? Such things are definitions of who we think we are, who we decided to become and what we have been.

But what do we think will set us apart from others? Probably not our passport number, PIN number, or ID number. I believe that long ago, in the Twentieth Century we agreed that a person should never be identified with a number...

Genuinely recommend eye-openers in the exhibition:

True Mirror
See yourself - as others see you.

Hereafter
See yourself - as another person.

Public profiler
Find out how many of 'you' are out there and where.


IDENTITY: EIGHT ROOMS, NINE LIVES
26 Nov 2009 - 6 April 2010
More information here

Comments

Posted by Ed on 9th Jan 2010 11:23 AM
Wellcome Collection website
http://www.wellcomecollection.org

Posted by Sid the Monkey on 11th Jan 2010 09:55 PM
Left me thinking a while before writing this comment saying "nicely put" :)