Post 5 (Jessica M.)

The Seniors Project

The Seniors Project


     Growing up we’ve all been part of  a clique or subculture either within our school or work. Some of these groups are formed through similar activities or personal preferences like music or sports. We see these groups everywhere and they are identifiable by such characteristics as attire or attitude. Photographer Nikki S. Lee is an interesting figure in which without restraint has joined and immersed herself in multiple subcultures becoming a “Cultural Chameleon”.
    Through her most notable work, The Projects Series, Lee has been able to transform and perform “the codes and visual signs of specific American sub-cultures  including yuppies, swing dancers, drag queens, hip hop fans, and senior citizens”[1]. Through a change in makeup, clothes, and attitude she has fluidly changed her identity to fit any subculture she wishes to join. All this is simply captured by a point-and-shoot camera by a member of the group or a passerby. Lee has stated that these Projects were an  “extensions of herself “[2].

The Hispanic Project







In this series she is less of a photographer and more of an artist. Rather than controlling the camera she controls who she is by immersing herself as a member of the selected group and she relinquishes control of the camera to a passerby. Lee doesn’t only wear the  “costume”  or just “play a part like an actress” ; she fully commits herself to this persona by spending time in the community of her subject[3]. She plays her role through her attitude, her clothes, her hair, her makeup and her gestures.

Through this series she chooses to focus on the idea of identity and who she is amongst a group of people. She states that the people in her work are important in order to be able to recognize her own identity within the relationship with those people [4].


The Ohio Project









[1], [2]  Profile on Nikki Lee
[3]Stretching Identity to Fit: The Many Faces of Nikki S. Lee

[4] The Creators Project: Nikki S. Lee


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