Magical Ideations, 2013-2016

This interdisciplinary collaboration questioned what madness was, is, and could be. Visual artist Holli McEntegart and I made lively participatory spaces that engaged video, photography, performance, and ritual to poke at how otherworldly possibilities are policed and released within contemporary sociopolitical conditions.

Our work oscillated around Missed Connections – a multimedia experiment with the paranoia of neocolonial security states. During December 2014, a first iteration was performed in the US. Daily anonymous postings of statements from Magical Ideation – a psychological scale used to measure potential paranoia – were placed on New York’s Craigslist Missed Connections (a public website for realizing romantic and deviant fantasies), coupled with an email address for private responses, mapped to a physical location around New York City, scribed there in pencil, photographed, left to be rubbed off by elements or touch. Inspired by the US Department of Homeland Security’s ‘anti-terror’ campaign “If you see something, say something”, physical locations were randomly chosen during my daily commutes, echoing a banal everyday suspicion. During October 2015, a second iteration was performed in Aotearoa New Zealand. Daily anonymous postings of Magical Ideation statements were placed on Auckland’s Craigslist Missed Connections, coupled with an email address for private responses, mapped to a physical location around the city, scribed there with pencil, photographed, left to be rubbed off by elements or touch. Inspired by the 1907 Tohunga Suppression Act, physical locations were specifically chosen to echo dis-membered dreams.