Eyes opened: A series of ceramic works dedicated to Trans-gender Families

Jon Curnoe Ceramics Art + Perception 106 2017 Yarrobil Home

From the start - birth, society, with its culturally stereotypical views, will assign a gender; in this case male. We can tell he's male because he's dressed in blue and straight, right? So he must be. We cannot see or feel the inner presence, so his soul must be male too. All is good, society is in balance; everyone is conforming.

Gender branding based on physical appearance is not always correct and for many, it is completely wrong. Even in his early years he may have a sense of confusion regarding society’s expectations. Sometimes those closest to him can sense this. He will constantly fear that society will disapprove of his feelings. The deepest emotional scars are carved into him if he thinks his friends and family also disapprove. This burdening pressure will start to affect his physical presence and cracks appear as small bits of pink are courageously revealed in his search for his identity.

Gender branding based on physical appearance is not always correct and for many, it is completely wrong.

This enormous pressure placed on him by society to conform will force him to appear to remain blue on the outside, but the inside is not; he's pink. The unrelenting and exhausting internal struggle leads to emotional issues including depression, anxiety, self-harming, isolation, paranoia, suicide, delusions, anorexia. The list just goes on causing greater and greater physical effect; and the cracks widen as things deform.

Too many times, there are complete breakdowns leading to inconsolable dysfunction. Amid complex inner-thoughts and the pressure to appear normal, a degree of internal damage is sustained - impossible for experts, friends and family to predict. All we can do is support him. Even when that support is pushed away. It's difficult. You want her to take her own, first steps again. Always ready in case she falls, as we did before. We work to maintain a path for her to take those first, unsteady steps - and in some cases, help build alternative ones.

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