the journal project

the journal project

The Journal Project began with three blank journals and three ex-lovers. Each participant was asked to keep a journal as their own for a week before passing it on to a new participant of their choosing. The intent was to continue this chain until each journal was filled, at which point they would be returned to me. Participants were free to be as open or as guarded as they wished in their entries; to identify themselves or not; and to determine the next recipient at any point during their time with the journal.

My primary inquiry was one of identity. Who are we when we think nobody else is watching? How does that shift in the presence of specific people? And how does it shift again, when a broader but unidentifiable public may also be watching?

The journals never came back. They’re in the wild. Shoved in a sock drawer; left at a bus stop; burned for kindling? Chances are I’ll never know. But before they slipped over the horizon, a few participants who were known to me blogged about their experiences. This (anonymously) is what they had to say.

I also took notes on the many conversations about the project that I had with early participants, and recorded my own experiences as well. This is what we had to say.