Grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else (2017)
Tsuchimoto envisioned this performance with the intention of creating an illusional disorder generated by sounds, lights, and aggressive actions. Her objective was to convey an oppressive experience upon the audience members in a demanding and theatrical context. With the work, she questioned individual responsibility and engagement in the group and the process of creating collective emotions and crowd phenomena.
First, Tsuchimoto handed out blindfolds to the members at the entrance and began the performance with a friendly instruction to wear the blindfolds. The lights were turned off and she gave gentle touches to each member in the darkness. After a while, sound (created with the intention of agitating the audience) was played and strobe lights started to blink. Then performers placed among the audience members began to scream and stomp throughout the performance space. While the performers shouted and walked around the space chaotically, Tsuchimoto and several assistants attempted to comfort the audience members and rescue them from the nerve-racking situation. As the dynamic intensity of the sound amplified, the level of the screaming also escalated. The performance ended when the entire audience was evacuated from the main stage.
Performance at Tehdas Theatre, Turku, Finland: Organized by New Performance Turku
(photo by Julius Töyrylä, video by Christopher Hewitt)
Samuel Antero Laakso
Sound: Daniel Konar