This project explores the psychological roots and implications of oral fixation behaviors across different life stages. Widely recognized as an unconscious behavior in infants, placing hands or fingers near or in the mouth is emphasized by Freud's theory of psychosexual development. This behavior remains fundamental from birth until death.
Each photograph captures candid moments where subjects engage in oral fixation out of habit, anxiety, contemplation, or comfort. The diverse backgrounds of the subjects illustrate the universality of this behavior, transcending cultural, social, and economic boundaries. These moments of unmasking the persona, typically private, are instead seen in public, offering a raw glimpse into the innate human psyche. Freud's notion of fixation at the oral stage is re-examined with modern understandings of stress responses and coping strategies, considering the biological and evolutionary aspects of oral behaviors as adaptive functions.
The photographs show how an instinctive action for comfort in infancy evolves into a multifaceted behavior in adulthood, resurfacing in moments of vulnerability or introspection. The project challenges the view that oral fixation is merely a childhood phase, proposing it as an enduring aspect of human behavior. By capturing this behavior across the lifespan, it highlights the continuity of primal instincts that connect us across age and experience.
Melbourne CBD. 2023.
Melbourne CBD. 2023.
Melbourne CBD. 2023.
Melbourne CBD. 2023.
Times Square. New York City. 2023.
Times Square. New York City. 2023.
Collins Street and Swanston Street, Melbourne, Australia. 2023.
Collins Street and Swanston Street, Melbourne, Australia. 2023.

You may also like

Back to Top