A study of the the duality of masculinity and femininity as represented in pop culture through celebrity female impersonation.
Wiccan theology believes in a Creative Life-force that is the spark and essence of all creation. This Creative Life-force is divided into two equal halves of the divine masculine and the divine feminine, and they move together in constant ebb and flow, striving always for balance in their perfect complement. Symbolically, it is perhaps the yin and yang of Chinese philosophy that best represents this duality. In Wicca, these aspects are represented by the Lord and Lady, or God and Goddess, the Heavenly Father and Earthly Mother of this nature based religion.
Wicca further teaches that we as human beings are physically manifested through a combination of the four basic elements of the world: Earth, Air, Fire, and Water (the building blocks of creation) and house the divine spark of the Creative Life-force that is both masculine and feminine in nature.
Physically, barring congenital abnormalities, we are born into the world either male or female. However, intellectually, emotionally, and certainly from the Wiccan spiritual perspective, we are all intrinsically connected to the divine masculine and feminine inherent in the Creative Life-force in all of us. These aspects of masculinity and femininity are not hardwired to our biology, but are situationally accessed through our minds, hearts, and spirits in an effort to better understand ourselves, the opposite sex, and therefore better express ourselves in any given situation.
For Jacks and Queens I have chosen four male artists and entertainers who each created a distinct female persona as a form of artistic expression (or exploration). Despite their respective level of individual fame or celebrity as a male, they each employed their female persona to better understand, influence, and communicate with the world.
I have combined the duality of their personas with the four suits from a deck playing of cards. These suits each have their own inherent aspects of the divine masculine and the divine feminine (some quite obvious, and some more esoteric in nature). In addition, each suit correlates to the four basic elements of creation: Earth (Diamonds), Air (Spades), Fire (Clubs), and Water (Hearts).
It is my hope that the culmination of these aspects of duality, grounded in cultural symbolism and embedded within the familiarity of playing cards and celebrity figures, will allow the work to resonate deeply with the viewers and get them to an examine the masculine and feminine duality inherent within themselves.