Megan Constance Altieri

Megan Constance Altieri


Shrouded Figure Series

The ruthless complexity of the human mind disables identities from being fully unearthed. From what is known about the mind, our realities tend to be built upon biases, memories, and heuristical errors, which are essentially fabrications that we consider truth. Our self-concept is at the mercy of our skewed interpretation of reality. We are reinforcing who were are through a reality we have virtually created, nullifying the capability to know ourselves from a raw, objective perspective.


Human beings identify themselves with their own perceptions but rarely acknowledge the structural integrity of those perceptions. The under workings can be so subconscious and so elaborately falsified that we are only mentally capable of organizing them into generalized identities. People are quick to latch onto a concrete identity by reducing themselves to a congruent set of characteristics. We do not take the time to explore those less congruent features for fear of lacking an established, unified self. We shortchange ourselves by ignoring the multitudes that lay under the surface.


In my work, I have chosen to portray the complexities of the self and how identities form and function. This is depicted through through the manipulation of found objects, plaster, fabric, and resin. Found objects are stacked to create personality-forming narratives then the overall form is abstracted with plaster, fabric and resin. Balancing these objects speaks to the delicate under-workings that go into transforming fabricated concepts into solidified identities. We often build up our identities from unstable bases. We take a circumstance, interpret it, modify it, and then use it as a reference point from which to build. This causes an identity to be crafted, then reinforced by the circumstances of life. When the objects are abstracted, there is no longer visual evidence of the original narrative besides its effect on the outer layer. This unstable progression of objects has now been built, buried, stabilized, and solidified by a material. This expresses the mind’s subconscious choice to simplify our identities, as well as the identities of others, by reducing them to a unified form.


This series acknowledges that human being hold multitudes. It is about the freedom born from understanding that we have a natural inclination to compromise our identity. We can reconcile that limitation through the journey of self-exploration, but only by first acknowledging the inability to know our purest selves.