Uniform By John Keatley

Uniform is the latest project in a larger series where I am exploring identity. In Uniform, I am curious about how stripping away layers of identity and humanity allows us to become callous to life and difficult issues. In part, I am talking about war and the military, though this is really a much broader issue of how we judge or draw conclusions about others outside of context. A portrait series about real soldiers would be talked about with a certain reverence and respect. However, we dipped our soldiers in green plastic, and shrunk them down, and context went out the window. It’s much easier to push something to the side when it’s not staring you square in the face, and that is what seems to have happened with green army men toys. But when we are confronted with a human life, and a real face, it becomes a completely different story. How do we respond to that image, a green army man toy, when humanity and individuality are reintroduced?

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