An infection is an invasion of the body. Bacteria and viruses attack healthy cells, creating disease, illness, and a myriad of other issues. When the host becomes physically infected, they are no longer in command of how their body reacts. The body can fight back or shut down, but either way the host is unable to control their physical reaction. An infection of the mind develops in a similar manner. Though actual bacteria and viruses are not present, mental illness causes the host to lose control of some aspect of their mind.
Anxiety is an emotional infection. Similar to a disease, anxiety infects the mind the same way a virus or bacteria overtakes the body. It causes the host to lose control of their mind, and spiral into a cycle of irrational thought patterns they are unable to escape. When I experience anxiety, it is often undetectable to the world outside of my own mind. It is an interior and invisible struggle, only recognizable to others by my own verbal admission. The constant and unrelenting cycle of irrational thoughts often leaves me paralyzed; with the inability to articulate the extreme emotional distress I am experiencing.
This body of work is an exploration of the physical bacteria and viruses that exist within the body, paralleled to the repetitive thought patterns and loss of control in the mind caused by anxiety. My struggle with mental illness is manifested through the creation of my own physical representation of the emotional infections that cause anxiety. Mimicking the microscopic view of an infection in the body, these emotional infections represent the obsessive nature of an irrational, anxious thought pattern. Through the use of the repetitive textures found in actual viruses and bacteria, and the radioactive color schemes seen under a microscope, the pieces in Emotional Infection are a visual representation of an otherwise invisible struggle.