Felicia Diaz

Monotony: Self-Portrait

pastel on matboard, 35 x 28 in.

My work deals directly with the struggle of the individual to present themselves to the public world in a way that is both honest and fulfilling. In society, I feel that the process of how to act in various social settings has become more confusing and convoluted than ever before, because of things like social media and the growth of technology. In these instances, younger generations are the most susceptible. Social media has brought about reality t.v. and the over-exposure of celebrities. These programs are allegedly a documentation of “real life”. However, most of it is scripted, manufactured, and unnatural. This puts out an artificial standard of conduct for people to judge themselves against. Advances in technology and the internet have also promoted social, face-to-face disconnect. Many people have trouble sharing things when their face is not hidden behind a web page. Overall there is an inauthenticity in what people allow themselves to share with one another.

In my pieces, I use relatable depictions of people, but juxtapose this with a dramatic and theatrical use of symbolism. I obscure the figure’s physical persona by using things like duct tape and latex directly on the face. I want the viewer to sense the disconnect and struggle to see who the person I am depicting really is behind all the layers. However, overall the main purpose is to represent the restraint one induces on oneself when facing the world, and how they do this out of fear, confusion, or simply self-doubt.