Jessica Burke
Christian as the Boy Wonder of Gotham
27 x 35”, Graphite on Arches HP, 2013
This work explores identity and gender politics as filtered through the lens of popular culture. This series allows the sitter to assume the persona of a fictional character from film, literature or television that was particularly influential during their formative years. The media we eagerly consumed as young people, and continue to consume throughout our adult lives, has unequivocally influenced how we see ourselves.These drawings demonstrate that the way in which we articulate ourselves, specifically our ideal selves, is built out of the tenets given to us by popular culture. They reveal a shared sense of an inner desire to be more than the reflection we see in the mirror and closer to the impossible/improbable reflections from our smart phone, tablet, television or movie screen.The act of drawing is a metaphor for charting the course of the mind in its efforts to focus, understand and codify the complex structure of identity and the definition of the “successful self”.