Live performance and video installation, Day For Night presented by Performance Space, Sydney, 13-15 February 2014

Episode was the first installment of an ongoing investigation into representations of the deviant woman identity. The work aims to critically respond to notions of 19th Century hysteria in psychoanalysis through a repositioning of hysteric gesture in a contemporary context. Episode is a video installation and live performance of a six minute and forty second head-banging routine on loop, the average time of an hysteric episode. This routine draws influence from the aesthetic of rock and punk culture.

In its 19th century context, the hysterical woman came to life in the photographic studios and lecture theatres of prominent asylums like Jean-Martin Charcot’s Salpetriere in Paris. These spaces became a primary site for the emergence of hysteria as performance where female patients perpetually presented, represented, and reproduced hysterical gestures all in the name of scientific research. Hissy Fit sought to channel the frenzied energy of these gestures into their work as they celebrate the defiant power and ferocity of the hysteric woman.

Episode was performed at Day For Night presented by Performance Space and part of the 2014 Sydney Mardi Gras Festival cultural program at Carriageworks, Sydney.


Production Credits

Sound: Stereogamous

Video: Anna Breckon

Lighting: Clytie Smith

Costume: Rochelle Pudney



Image credit: Lucy Parakhina

Episode by Hissy Fit

Film credit: Dara Gill