For a nation as divided as America is right now in 2017, one thing that seems to unite people from all walks of life is an ongoing state of worry. Across all our boundaries – ideological, geographic, economic, and social – Americans decry the ills of a country we no longer recognize. While there once seemed room enough for Americans of all identities, suddenly those identities are at stark odds with one another. As time passes will we normalize these new postures? Will we look at our flag and see nothing more than the same old Red White and Blue?
Worry Flags began in early 2017 as a means to cope with the intensity of the current divisions in our country, and to stand as an ongoing testament for why this time is so atypical, and why we should not forget that – lest these new attitudes come to permanently define us.
Deceptively quaint at first glance, the precise directional machine stitching of each Worry Flag reveals multiple, contrasting, and often conflicting symbols as viewers move around them in relation to the light.
As viewers interact with the Worry Flags, both physical and symbolic states are simultaneously set in flux. A change in one’s position can quite literally result in an equal and unexpected shift in one’s psychological and emotional state due to the imagery revealed.
Some Worry Flags seem to highlight irreconcilable differences, while others speak to the possibility of new alliances. Ultimately, Worry Flags are meant to weave us both internally and externally towards the difficult conversations about American identity that are long overdue.
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