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Optimal Distance

Vera Ryklova

Inspired by what it has been for me to live abroad, the work explores a sense of belonging and looks at themes of identity transformation and culture perception.

I initiated this project after living almost ten years in Ireland to confront my longing for feeling at home in one place that maintains my mind free of concern. On a journey of personal discovery, purely motivated by a desire for a life change, I left my home for new. But the shifts in psychological sets challenge my sense of unity and breed a sense of displacement. I have been left with a grief-like emotion.

The key attitude to my confrontation is to gain an access to inhabited places where I perform while letting myself be inspired by as well as using their original interior designs to claim each place to be my home. This creates an illusion that fixes my grieving mind. The physical spaces I occupy connote the process of seeking a resolution to the loss (of a sense of belonging). My body is where the conflicted experience is homed and where the shift in perception is manifested, it is where the emotional and social transition takes place as foreign is accepted for domestic.

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