photo: Jimmie Allen
Growing up, I was known and treated as the baby of the family. This has affected me in ways I only now as an adult comprehend. While I have always had a playful attitude towards life its mostly because I dislike facing responsibilities and hardships and will regress into my childlike state of mind to avoid dealing with my problems. However, now as a 25-year-old I am being told to put away childish behavior and grow up, although I suppose I don’t fully understand what that means.
I have channeled that fear and anxiety into my pieces. My work depicts old childhood toys and objects given new form. The first, a wave stands at 6 ft tall it’s colorful and eye catching but also slightly foreboding. The wave is covered in toys, ones I played with growing up and have fond memories with. It reflects my happiest moments in childhood, playtime. But as its own entity it's also standing as if confrontational. I worry about the future situations I’m sure to have in life so much so that it triggers my strongest forms of anxiety. Just like growing up and taking on the role deemed for me as an adult is intimidating so is leaving behind the safety of childhood.
As if trapped by fear I find myself chained to the behavior I developed by being coddled and thus unprepared for the real world and its challenges. The second piece, a video depicts restraint by using toys as metaphorical weights. Children often have it easier when it comes to what the world expects of them. They can make mistakes, learn and grow from them. This isn’t often the case when I think of adults. Adults need to have it all figured out. But we never do.
Personal Web Site of Jaden Rodriguez