Belonging in Limbo

by Kelly Pickering

Artist statement

For my final year of my graphic design degree in Edinburgh, Scotland, we had to create a major project in which we explored a topic in depth for a year. So, naturally, I decided to look into my upbringing being a third culture kid.

This led me to my project concept where I explored how this type of nomadic childhood affects TCKs once they are adults and are having to figure out who they are and where they belong. In my project I am questioning whether there is a way that we can widen our definition of belonging to accept those that have fragmented belonging. Globalisation is creating a whole new side to belonging. Being a global citizen means you belong in multiple places. This idea is not yet well understood by the public.

The world is a dazzling place with so much travel and opportunity, we often lose sense of who we are and where we belong. Where do we belong? If we belong nowhere and yet everywhere, we belong to Limbo. Two hundred forty-four million people, or 3.2 percent of the world’s population, live outside of their countries of birth, and this number is constantly growing. Our belonging can no longer be defined as one place; our belonging is fragmented. We have left parts of our belonging all over the world. These fragments piece together to create our identity and our place in Limbo.

“Limbo” travel campaign poster
“Limbo” travel campaign poster
Trying to define “home” as a TCK

Kelly Pickering is the graphic designer of Among Worlds magazine. She was born in London, her parents are South African, and she has lived in Holland, Australia, New York, Scotland, and now has gone full circle and is living in London.

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