hearing voices
“The voices not only speak to the patient, but they pass electricity through the body, beat him, paralyse him, take his thoughts away.” Eugen Beuler, 1911

This installation consists of three hanging orbs, which represent a multisensory experience felt and lived by people who hear voices. These hallucinations are distilled and translated into interactive transformations using sound, light and movement.
The audience is invited to step inside the orbs and have a glimpse into someone else’s mind and witness their internal narrators.

Research has shown that these often distressing voices are not caused by a malfunction of the brain, but should be understood as a variation in human behaviour, like being left-handed. It is not so much the voices that are the problem, but the difficulties that some people have in coping with them.

Many thanks for lending me the memories of their voices to the members of the I.R.I.E. Mind's Hearing Voices Group in Hackney and its facilitator Shane Collings

And many thanks to my advisors:
Dr David O’Flynn (consultant psychiatrist at the Lambeth and Maudsley Hospitals), Dr Amy Hardy (Research Clinical Psychologist) and Professor Tom KJ Craig from King’s College London, Artists Jane Fradgley & Dolly Sen, who work in a similar field, Chris Shen, Robin Baumgarten and Jack Dear

Commissioned by Emily Wiles for Dark Matters at Manchester Museum of Science & Industry, November 2013

photo credtits: Jack Dear, Pablo Melchor, Christopher Foster