Bold & Baffling

The goal of this project is to map the emotional journey of the love addict in order to be able to recognize and assess the patterns. I am especially interested in discovering patterns found in human behaviour, in cycles of addiction as well as societal stereotypes.

The “Bold & Baffling” series is inspired by the soap opera of a similar name and deals with the cycles of addiction (emotional) and it's biological underpinnings. I am fascinated by these cyclical patterns.

Like sexual pornography, emotional pornography stimulates just enough to keep the addict interested but not enough to be satiated. Soap operas use emotion as their raw material just as porn uses the body. The defining quality of the soap opera form is its seriality.

Recently, I noted these following emotional states in the first 5 minutes of the soap opera, “The Bold & the Beautiful”: reflection, regret, shame, desire, self-loathing, fear, neediness, recognition, concern, shock, nurture, loss. guilt,  realization, and anguish.

One could observe the emotional arc of the characters and thereby its audience.

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Soap operas have a strong female following.

“The soap opera has always been a “woman’s” genre… assumed of interest… to working-class women with simple tastes and limited capacities… Despite the fact that the soap opera is demonstrably one of the most narratively complex genres of television drama… it continues to carry this sexist and classist baggage”.

“By the 1980’s some 50 million viewers in the U.S. “followed” one or more of the soaps”

“the core demographic group of 18-49 year-old women.”

The Museum of Broadcast Communications

“Emotional Porn” investigates the emotional “ups and downs”, noting the cycles, ensuing drama, and semi-resolution found in soap operas.

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Like sexual porn, the viewer is stimulated just enough to keep watching but not enough to be satiated. Soap operas use emotion as their raw material just as porn uses the body.

pornography… n. obscene literature, photographs, paintings. Etc. intended to cause sexual excitement   the treating of obscene subjects in art, literature…

addict…1. to habituate, esp. to be or become addicted to have given oneself up to a practice or habit, usually bad and be or become unduly dependent upon it.

The New Lexicon Webster’s Dictionary of the English Language:
Encyclopedic Edition 1988
, Lexicon Publications, Inc. New York  

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I am fascinated by cyclical patterns and during the making of this work, found a connection to patterns of weather, recycling, plumbing, and human behaviour — it functions ad infinitum.

While working as an artist in residency (Iceland), I discovered the yuletide lads of Icelandic culture. They are tricksters and children are warned to watch out for them especially at Christmas. In my installation these trolls are re-enacting addictive or anti-social behaviours. This series continues an engagement with psychological states.


The Bold and the Baffling Invite         The Bold and the Baffling Invite 2