Stephen Kwok’s project dismantles the internal logic of wildly disparate events and reassembles them into a single cohesive experience. He investigates how sound can be manipulated to subtly shape mundane events. Is it possible to redirect the type of attention normally reserved for the sacred space of the theater? To what extent can the idea of “non-sense” be a way of responding to the historical-political events shaping today’s world?
“The events I would like to merge are standard occasions: conferences, concerts, sermons, psychic readings, personal celebrations, etc. I will break the rituals of these ‘source events’ into parts and rearrange them into a hybrid experience guided by a specific non-sense. This approach is inspired by media-saturated ways of living, where information, objects, emotions, and procedures fold into each other in a conflation of digital and physical experience.”
For the Forecast Forum, Kwok will compose an initial iteration in which a dancer-led contact improvisation workshop and a PowerPoint presentation occur simultaneously. For the Forecast Festival, he plans to invite local individuals and organizations to contribute events, culminating in a final full-scale performance.
Kwok’s previous work has also explored the art of disrupting routine. In Recreational Meeting (2013), he destabilized the frame of a corporate meeting by encouraging audience members to participate in absurd actions such as reading poetry in unison, attempting to break out of the meeting room, and taking naps. As in 6pm, Kwok brought the idea of “non-sense” that underlies commonplace situations to the fore.
Stephen Kwok is an artist and composer based in New York City. Learn more about his work at kwokstephen.com.
Photos: Emerson Granillo, Stephen Kwok