“Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask and he will tell you the truth.” ~Oscar Wilde
As long as human beings have lived together, we have worn masks. They allow us to step outside our ordinary life, tell a story, be the person we wish we could be. They can also be used to deceive, manipulate or frighten our fellow man. Ceremonial masks and theater make up are put on over the face, and are usually easy to recognize. Others are more subtle; we might mask our true feelings when a friend asks for an opinion, or put on “a brave face” when we’re scared. We may write provocative comments on line using a false name. But like a plastic Batman face with eye holes cut out, wearing a mask can also obscure or limit our own vision of the world.
This month’s challenge is to explore the masks we use in our lives, the literal and/or figurative. Does the mask protect you, hide you or allow you to be your true self?
The “Behind the Mask” Gallery opens December 26. Stay tuned!