Landscapes of Human Behaviour

Mexico City 2010

By Daniel Lavoie

Being a visual minority in Mexico, I receive many curious looks while walking throughout the streets and, as a result of this, it has forced me to explore these onlookers with an equal amount of interest. I have become somewhat of an addict to view Mexicans and their body language. This current body of work is an expression of my emotional reaction due to my assumptions of people based on their appearance and how they present themselves in public.

The personal task of realizing and understanding our own body language and its behaviour can easily become choked with complicated ideals and their beliefs. With that being said, try to analyze someone else’s human behaviour and you will quickly realise that the situation poses a much greater task. As a whole this sentiment makes me feel isolated because I know that I may never find answers to the questions which that I ask myself. The result is a massive labyrinth of paths only leading to a massive series of dead ends.  

I imagine myself walking through my paintings as if they are landscapes; but instead of admiring the view I desire to seek out the scenario as if it is a puzzle that needs completion. At times the pieces of these puzzles are right-angled and sensible to put together but more often the objects fall to a messy and gross finale. I imagine the human body and it’s characteristics as if they are within a factory of unexplored territories, squeezing themselves through obstacles that seem impossible.  These deep thoughts control my own body to create moments of pure emotional energy that tell my stories within my work.

The overwhelming differences of body language between an Anglo world and a Latino world have proven to be so radically different to me. The fact that the significance of one action contains a fresh definition elsewhere simply fascinates me. My transition to Mexico was a bizarre journey that forced me to open my eyes and resulted in me befriending a mountain of questions. Who is this person in front of me really and are they affecting me in some way? This is a visual investigation based on the transformation of my personal identity, thus allowing me to further understand my own self.