What is identity and how does it manifest itself?

As a jewellery artist, I make jewellery. Jewellery is said that it’s a part of you. That it’s telling people something about you. Your story. It’s part of your identity. But how can a piece of jewellery talk about identity? But how do we do it? How can a body talk about identity? Seeing only somebody’s face you know something about that person. How is that possible? What is identity?

If I would show you a picture of me, you would know something about me. Because clothing and jewellery say something about who you are. When you see a particular piece of jewellery it speaks to you, it gives you information. But how does that work? How can a piece of jewellery talk about identity?

Look closer at my face, at my hair and skin. I have blonde hair and a Western European appearance. You don’t see any wrinkles yet, but sometimes a bit of acne. Now you could maybe tell my age and cultural background. But how can you read this from my face? Is it the skin that tells you this? Does your face also provide some basic information like jewellery does? Are there certain rules we follow reading somebody’s face? How can a face talk about identity?

Identity is something from within that manifests itself. Your own thoughts and feelings are private, protected by your skin. The outside is visible and understandable for people, but some thoughts and feelings still appear on the skin. The skin as a border of your private perspective and the public world… and a mirror of your private perspective. The skin is a place where your private perspective becomes your identity. But how does this work? How does your identity manifest itself?

With all these questions I started a philosophical search. I wanted to understand why and what, the deep down and maybe even the start. But the more I read the more questions I got. Questions I didn’t have a reply for. To ask the questions in a different way and to give me a different perspective, I started working. With a question in my mind, I made a piece. Every piece is made with another question in mind. Asking another question.

What is identity and how does it manifest itself? Look at the jewellery. Feel them. Do they give you a possibility to the questions? What do you think about the questions? Can we together find an option? Or does a reply not exist?