i’ve been to the olympic stadium last night to watch athletics – it was quite a special experience to enter the stadium that has been built over years in my neighbourhood, now filled with thousands of people, anticipation, excitement, flags, cameras, olympic paraphernalia. it felt a bit like a big carnival to me – all the people dressed up in Team-GB-support outfits with face painting, hats, wigs, wavy hands… i quite enjoyed the fun people seemed to have with it despite all the discomfort lots of us have around corporate sponsorship, olympic missiles etc.
dressing up is a curious thing – we’ve talked a lot about it at work recently: whether it’s relevant to dress up in a particular way when meeting with young people, potential funders, potential clients – what role does ‘uniform’ have to make us feel save, comfortable, taken serious, or the opposite: to help us feel liberated, to enjoy and not have to be serious. i feel increasingly that i can’t be bothered to wear what might be expected of me, am somewhere between the old-school german approach of ‘it’ll have to be functional depending on weather & bike miles today’ and the carnival approach of ‘it’ll be an expression of how i’m feeling today’…
i believe that ‘dressing’ has got so much to do with fear of being judged – or expecting to be judged: we submitted a project proposal this week and went the extra mile to design it so that its layout is really an artistic expression of what we’re planning to do and hopefully stands out and has a chance of being ‘spotted’… so judge for yourself what you think about the acts of self-expression in the olympic stadium last night: