Why, Why ohh why (YYOY)

2017, performance based installation

w/ Marijn Brussaard

RGBW LED, C4, MDG ATMe, 4DSOUND spatial sound software, steel, heat, strobes, scent by Klara Ravat


‘The only thing we have to fear is the ‘culture of fear’ itself.’ - Frank Ferudi

'The invention of the ship, is also the invention of the shipwreck" - Paul Virilio


Contemporary fear is a fear that is omnipresent, that is as ungraspable as liquid, a haze that surrounds us all. Contemporary fear is constant and lingering. We don’t know where it is coming from or when it will hit. It is the crest of a wave suspended, never hitting the shore. From the refugee crisis, to the loom of terrorist threats, to the spectre of climate change, the fear that something is coming creates an endless, disproportionate feeling of anxiety under the surface of our daily interactions. According to Danish philosopher Kierkegaard, dread is not so much a fear of the present, but a fear of the future...not a fear of the actual, but a fear of the possible.


Our current climate of fear is centred on this fear of the possible, and with his performance Why, Why ohh why (YYOY), Nikki Hock wants to create awareness about this phenomenon and the very workings of its operation within ourselves and society. YYOY is the first part of a trilogy of installation based performances dealing with the pillars of modern citizenship. The work responds to this current prevailing culture (and climate) of fear by exploring this issue through scientific and sociological theories and research. Using new technological developments, Hock examines and therewith illuminates this contemporary phenomenon and its underlying social structures that create a society living in permanent insecurity.


For YYOY, a space is designed which immerses the viewer in an uncanny experience—a multi-sensory abstracted space that anticipates our feelings of anxiety. The audience is accompanied through an increasingly obscured landscape of smell, image, color, light, temperature, and spatial sound, along a range of abstract and emotional layers to create an experience confronting them with their own fear. The combination of elements - controlled and manipulated live - hyper-stimulates the senses, creating an array of incoming information that the brain is not fully able to process. As the performance unfolds, it carries the spectator from one emotional state to another. All components - the audience, the space, the elements - create an interplay out of which emerges an environment in which fear is exposed as an affective domain. There is no safe spot for the audience, only complete immersion in the space.


The work is contained by a start and an end point, but everything in between is performed live, in real-time, and can shift at any moment—creating a responsive journey that is in constant dialogue.


With the kind support of: Fonds Podiumkunsten, Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunsten, BNG Cultuurfonds, Stichting Melanie, Beamsystems, 4DSOUND, Spectro Productions, Klara Ravat & Showsync