A lot of my work is focused on detaching myself from ‘the known self’. It’s about breaking free from what we think we know about ourselves, what we think is expected of us and what we expect from ourselves. I find it often takes a sledgehammer to destroy social norms, gender roles and other restricting “rules” and “borders” that are there to keep us under control and bind us to normative behaviour.
I suppose this way of working comes from an underlying distrust towards everyday human behaviour and an uncontrollable desire to find the raw gem of life, the essence of a human being.
Destroy, Discover; Unleashed is based on an experiment I did in 2009-2010. I realised that my behaviour was – for a great part – linked to social programming and the fear of not conforming to those standards. During the experiment I tried to give into impulses I’d normally suppress. I would analyse why I would normally suppress these urges and what happened when I did give in to that behaviour and let myself be as impulsive as possible.
I vigorously broke down what I thought was stopping me from being free. The performance Destroy, Discover; Unleashed is based on my experiences during this process.
Let’s take back what’s ours: our own lives, our mind and body, our desires and our dreams. It’s your time to reign.
Watch the video Destroy, Discover; Unleashed (2010) by Steph Byrne:
I’m Steph Byrne, a photography artist with Dutch/Scottish roots.
I graduated in 2011 on Photography at AKV | St. Joost in Breda, Holland.
I’m participation manager at festival Incubate, Tilburg and work at several different venues and festivals in (pre-)production.