My Artist statement (72)Posted: May 15, 2015
“Dread” requires a specific object of which we are afraid. ‘Fright,’ however, emphasizes the element of surprise; it describes the state that possesses us when we find ourselves plunged into danger without being prepared for it. Sigmund Freud
My work explores themes regarding peoples phobias. My goal is not necessarily to frighten people, it’s about facing that fear and encouraging others to overcome it. I recreated several phobias from data I collected from people and placed myself in specific situations in order to experience that individuals fear.
This was mentally and physically challenging as I experienced Claustrophobia in an abandoned, collapsed tunnel in Cardiff. I also donated blood, alongside interacting and handling animals such as rats, snakes and a tarantula, but also facing my own fear of Vertigo by climbing a ladder.
For me that was mentally challenging as it surfaced traumatic memories and experiences as a child. But I felt it was a achievement as I felt liberated to try and overcome my own phobia.
I found the tunnel to be physically challenging to explore and experience. It was very dangerous and extremely narrow. There was also severe risk of it collapsing a second time as it was very unstable. I had to crawl on my stomach to enter the tunnel and then again, where it previously collapsed.
Not only have I personally experienced these phobias but the viewer can also experience my struggle, mentally and physically throughout these ordeals.