November 24, 2012
Air Canada Centre, Toronto
A performance, sound and video installation sculpture.
by Stephanie Luong
Ragna = “gods” or “ruling power”
Rok = cause, fate or end
Therefore, the meaning of the word is “final destiny of the Gods” or “End of the Gods”; or “when the Gods will be destroyed”.
RAGNAROK is a conceptual staged embodiment of earthquakes, floods and severe thunderstorms that reveals the destruction of old mythology, proving that contemporary films and various news corporations are the new myth-makers of today. This is all presented in the spectacle of a disaster image to triggers our collective memory of the many disaster images (such as; the terrorist attack on 9/11, hurricane Katrina in 2005, the 2010 Haiti earthquake, and the 2011 Tōhoku tsunami in Japan) that we are familiar with due to continuous and obsessive media coverage. The real-time theatrical staging tells its story parallel to the old Norse myth of Ragnarok where the elemental Gods of water, earth and thunder (Thor, Odin, Loki, etc.) battle to their deaths causing the end of the world in a sequence of natural disasters. This results in the submersion of the world in water but also allows it to resurface anew, flourishing and with human beings. The Runes are marked with symbols that also represent the aforementioned Gods. During the duration of the installation, the rocks will eventually fall off the sound-making sculpture to create a sense of danger, causing the observers to tap into their inherent instincts (emotions, memories, and survival). Underneath the scenes of floods and storms with sharp sounds of thunder and quaking rocks, wire and technology are visible to suggest that human beings may be the root cause of the Earth’s frequent and recent ‘natural’ disasters. This refers to civilization’s God-like powers to perform modern day miracles, save with medicine, as well as create and destroy with technology simultaneously. The juxtaposition of terror and beauty in creation and destruction is fundamental to the circle of life and this art installation.
February 7, 2012