If we want to see differently, if we want to change our way of seeing, we have to change the perspective. Everyday we see so many things in our life which are normal for us because we never got to know them any other way. We learned since we were a child that that’s the way how things are.
In Vienna there was a project to change perspective in everyday life. They changed the symbols in the traffic lights. The traffic lights show always one little person, in the red light it stands straight and in the green light it walks. In Vienna this symbol was changed into two persons standing or walking together. This project was started in the setting of the pride parade, so there were three kinds of couples shown: A man and a woman, two women, or two men in love. So equal love for all shone from the traffic lights. With such a little change in the symbol we can spread a clear message. It’s also interesting how little is necessary to show us what should be a man or a woman. The figure which is shown normally is recognized as man. But we only recognize a female figure if it is indicated by her dress. To see women in persons there have to be special characteristics to show they’re women. People would recognize it, if everywhere would be female symbols instead of manly persons. The other way around is normal for us. The manly gender isn’t special, because we’re used to it, as standard. The same way, like heterosexual couples are the norm, it’s special to see a homosexual couple. It’s great to make homosexual love more visible, so I asked myself; will there ever come a day where we just don’t recognize it anymore, because it’s just normal reality for us?
Also it is really funny what happens if you change the presentation of men and women in media. For example this photography project where men are shown in typical women photo poses.
“Men-Ups! is a project aimed at reversing the stereotypes created by society, begging the questions; why is it sexual for a female to pose one way, and not sexual for a male? Why is it considered more comical or unsettling for males to act the more socially defined feminine? “(http://www.rionsabean.com/men-ups)
This photos show in how ridiculous poses women often are shown what is labeled as sexy. On the other way you can see how men are not allowed to show themselves in society. Projects like this open our eyes in many ways, because they let us see issues we`ve never seen before. When we switch the gender presentation, we see how deep in our performances gender is implemented, especially if it’s about performing sexuality.
We have to break something in our perception and turn it around to see what we never recognized before. We don’t just have to open boxes. The first step is to discover what is in it. It is time to see what we really see.