Bernice Wong

Fragile Expectations

Class of: 2022

Major: Illustration BFA

Medium: Installation, mixed media

Faculty: Jessica Cannon

Prompt: The assignment name is "Making Research Visible", requiring us to display our research in a visual, artistic way.

Integrative Studio

Integrative Seminar

My research investigated the traditional expectations of men constructed by history and society. I had collected some primary research on what my friends and acquaintances believed to be the societal expectations of men through a simple poll. After receiving a large amount of answers, I divided them into 5 categories of physical attributes, emotion-related, relationship-related, income/career-related and negative stereotypes, which I presented through different colours. The final installation is 12″ by 24″ and suspended from the ceiling like a baby’s hanging mobile, portraying how conventional expectations of men are imposed on males from the moment they were born. In creating an installation, I wanted people to walk through each hanging row, inspecting the text on the shapes and touching the solids, in an activity that allowed viewers to recognise these expectations and to discover how restricted males are by all these constructs. This topic on masculinity is important as these societal expectations are fuelling the continuation of toxic masculinity and, as a result, gender inequality. It is important that people learn about the influences that cause boys to develop healthy and unhealthy masculinity, and to be able to differentiate the constructs that grow toxic masculinity.