2015

Public Service Confessional

Public Service Confessional started as a question to myself, after yet another night of reading opaque Facebook statuses of friends new and old: what if there was a public space where we could simultaneously be anonymous and totally frank, vulnerable and honest, capable of telling others truths that were difficult even to tell ourselves? So much of our lives, after all, are viewed from the lens of social media updates from our friends and loved ones – and that lens is not always incredibly frank. How many friends on Facebook are actually friends? How perfect is that meal on Instagram in actuality?

Radio presented itself as equal parts metaphor and alternative: a well-established yet deemed archaic technology, ephemeral and easily malleable if presented with a strong enough transisitor in your hands. Imagine driving around and hearing glimpses of someone’s deepest secrets flickering into your car radio for just a moment. What would happen? How would you compute that moment? Would you hold the story in strictest confidence? Or would you tell a friend once you arrived at your destination? Would you be compelled to contribute as well?

With these questions in mind, I wrote a 20-minute radio script and recorded it ahead of time. As I edited and perfected my sound file, I also detailed a radio in what I considered to be an abstract likeness of self: the voicepiece to my body within the gallery space. When Public Radio Confessional was performed, I sat in front of the radio, listening to my confessions amongst my colleagues. There were moments when I referenced my possible interlopers; other times, I merely referenced the gallery space itself. But mostly it spoke to my childhood and how my anxiety and depression moulded me in that space, interspersed with the coping mechanisms I use to control the disorders: memorizing facts, reading, and tea.


4/11

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Public Service Confessional