The Allegory of Plato's Condo

I was initially assigned to collaborate with Jeremy Andersen, Tara Miche and Tracy Olson on an installation work. The only thing certain upon beginning our project was that we wanted our sculpture to cast interactive shadows onto figurative drawings on the wall. With the nature of collaborative design, that is losing the self driven decisions to a collective consciousness, we were left with identity theft to be a subject of top interest. Our sculpture was thus then designed to have a nondescript figure positioned so that they could be read as either running in fear or as if chasing a prey.

The piece is titled Plato's Condo is reference to Plato's cave. Plato's cave is an allegorical commentary on the human race in relations to education, perception and all of reality. Within Plato's cave inhabits prisoners staring at a blank cave wall watching shadows cast by their unseen captors and the illumination of fire. The illusion of shadow puppets as created by the captors are believed to be real things by the prisoner. Plato furthermore introduces a scenario where if the captors were to see the objects casting the shadows that they would not believe them to be "real" as the shadows are.

The ego is perhaps the greatest example of Plato's cave and of identity theft. The illusive ego which can never quite be pin-pointed lives in the past. Looking behind us we will see our shadow, the past, to which the ego may claim "this is what I am" and chain itself to this belief when this is at most a new perception of what was. The shadow of our ego is only a shadow on the wall, one must simply turn around to see the light.

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