July 31, 2020

Can we escape the traps of our own making?

Marianthi Macdonald, 23

The stress response is a mechanism designed to create a rush of energy, allowing us to fight off or run from a threat. Nowadays, with physical threats being less common, our stress response is triggered by events more deeply entwined with our lives, and what we perceive to be a threat to our lifestyle. This leads to prolonged periods of stress, which instead of helping hinder us, and negatively affect our health. My project explores the effects stress has on the mind, and how it changes our perception of the world around us. When mentally overwhelmed, our environment can take on a sinister edge, as our brain instinctually searches for physical targets. Dissociative states are a way of protecting the brain from overloading, which acts as a dampener. This causes the world to appear two-dimensional and flat, creating a disconnection between you and the world. I aim to capture the ineffective patterns of thought we become ensnared in, and the futility of it. Splintered, twisted shards constrict in towards the centre, representing the damage that stress causes us. Repeated patterns allude to clustered and overwrought thought processes, and tightly compressed forms give a feeling of suffocation.

Skewed Perceptions, 2020Metal