Hysteria | Cally Spooner, Soundtrack for a Troubled Time and Notes on Humiliation (2017)

Cally Spooner, Still from DRAG DRAG SOLO, 2016. Courtesy of the artists and Biennale de l’image en Mouvement

Whitechapel Gallery

30 August – 26 November 2017

Using text, sound and choreography Cally Spooner stages absurdist replays of the political, economic and media rhetoric of our time. Comedic and dystopian, her writing nips and tucks subjectivity into the abstract phrases of a high performance economy.

At Whitechapel Gallery, Spooner presents a new sound work; and the publication of a year long interview with psychiatrist Isabel Valli. In the right channel, performer Michelangelo Miccolis counts in his native Spanish. Miccolis and Spooner collaborate regularly, she as artist in his curatorial projects, he as producer to her live productions. His numerical monologue is choked by barrages of water being bucketed over him. In the left channel we hear the sharp thwack of a golf club, obliviously and relentlessly driving the ball.

The poster series Notes on Humiliation transcribes extracts from Spooner’s interview with psychiatrist Isabel Valli. They are overlaid with drawings of human organs that produce the stress hormone, cortisol. In order to understand hysteria at a societal level, doctor and artist probe into pre-verbal communication, trauma, apocalypse and protest asking how these conditions can be captured and made visible as fact, fiction or the symbolic in 2017.

In collaboration with Whitechapel Gallery

PS/Y’s Hysteria is a combined arts programme that explores health and illness in contemporary society, focusing on issues of gender, race and cultural identity. Hysteria is curated by Mette Kjærgaard Præst and takes place in partnership with organisations and institutions across London from August 2017 – April 2018.