Act Your Age

Act Your Age

Cosima Cobley Carr

This film addresses the topic of growing up. Like many people in their early twenties, I am caught in a transitional period between childhood and full adulthood. The expectations of someone my age are varied and often contradictory. We are told to worry about job prospects, decide between buying a property and pursuing creativity, between having children and having a career. On the other hand, we are meant to be ‘having the time of our lives’, free of worry and pursuing hedonistic practices without any foresight into the consequences.

This film also tackles the idea of childhood trauma. Trauma can force a child to grow up prematurely. This may mean that in some respect the process of growing up naturally is incomplete – and part of that individual may cease to grow up and be ‘stuck’ in childhood. To communicate this idea, I have focused on attachment to childhood toys. Donald Winnicott (child psychoanalyst) called toys ‘transitional objects’, seeing them as objects that aid a child to grow up. However, an adult who has failed to grow up completely (perhaps due to trauma) may use toys for the opposite – to access a comforting childhood mentality.  

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VideoJohn Byrne Award