EVOLVING THE STORY OF PSYCHOSIS
Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards ~ Kierkegaard
Recent research suggests that 1 in 13 people may experience a psychotic break before the age of 75. It is prevalent, yet hidden. It is feared and misunderstood. Psychosis is described as a set of symptoms in which thoughts and emotions become so impaired that one loses contact with reality, usually described as 'hallucinations' and 'delusions'. But how useful are these words if they tell us nothing about a person's experience? Psychosis remains a 'black box'.
A lack of understanding is a lack of action, affecting early detection and the time window for prevention. This leads to much unnecessary emotional suffering, loss of work, network and life. The history of how we have dealt with psychosis has been turbulent. Labyrinth Psychotica seeks to build bridges where storytelling is incomplete or failing.
LEARNING THROUGH FEELING
A deficit in soft skills affects relapse, recovery, therapy, trust, and loyalty, and in turn, affects the total costs to society. Our tools aim to generate dialogue and insights that are integral to empathy, awareness, and understanding. Just because we are empathic beings, does not mean we always use it. 'Learning through feeling' activates empathy.
Labyrinth Psychotica not only informs and educates about psychosis we also stimulate individual imagination. We view imagination as our most precious possession. Without imagination, we lose our mental flexibility. A flexible imagination is needed to help with early recognition, early intervention, and prevention, as well as support in recovery. It's time to let the light in.
Art is a wound turned into light ~ Georges Braque
Labyrinth Psychotica was founded by artist Jennifer Kanary Nikolov(a), who calls herself an ‘imagination navigator’. Jennifer's mission is to investigate the physics of thought. In 2005, Jennifer's sister-in-law died by suicide in a state of psychosis. It was only after her death that she realized that she knew little about her subjective experiences. She embarked on a practice-based Media Arts PhD to better understand what psychosis entailed. She researched literature, existing simulations and stories of people with experiences of psychosis to better understand what her sister-in-law had been going through. She found particular patterns which she translated into design principles. This resulted in Labyrinth Psychotica and its two prostheses for imagination: THE WEARABLE and THE LABYRINTH. An entrepreneurial journey began. A summary of her research journey (the dissertation) can be found here.
EVOLVING THE STORY OF PSYCHOSIS TOGETHER
Understanding psychosis can be difficult, even for experienced professionals. A glimpse through our 'psychotic lens' may bring mind-shifting insights that influence policies and methods of interaction. Shedding old ideas and embracing new ones.
Students are the professionals of the future. Doctors, nurses, teachers, politicians, police officers and prison guards in training- all will deal with psychosis throughout their careers. By understanding the subjective experiences of psychosis one obtains early career advantages.
As family or friends of someone in psychosis, it can be extremely hard to know what somebody goes through. An individual glimpse helps to make sense of why psychosis can be so challenging. Learning by feeling is a great way to add to a path of life-long learning.
As a society, we are connected with each other. If we want to be able to recognize psychosis on time in someone else (or ourselves), we need to build on our empathy skills. Empathy requires informed activation. It's time to change the story!
Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much ~ Helen Keller
SPECIAL THANKS TO OUR FINANCIAL AND ORGANISATIONAL SUPPORTERS & COLLABORATORS
The mission of the J&J Trust is to: "Make a sustainable, long-term difference to human health."
Without the generous financial support of the J&J Trust the development of The Wearable would simply not have been possible.
Janssen seeks medical breakthroughs wherever they occur, channeling internal expertise and embracing external science to bring the best solutions to people who need them.
Without the instrumental organizational support of Janssen in connecting us to The J&J Trust Labyrinth Psychotica would not exist as it is today.
MIND aims to help prevent psychological problems and support people who are dealing with psychological issues.
Without the organizational support of the Fonds Psychische Gezondheid (Now known as 'Mind') the development and spread of The Wearable would not have been possible.
The Mondriaan Fund is the public fund for visual art and cultural heritage.
Without the initial financial support of the FondsBKVB (now known as Mondriaan Fonds) the creative transition phase to receiving the J&J Trust Funds would not have been bridged. Nor would we be able to participate in international exhibitions at FACT in Liverpool or The Big Anxiety Festival in Sydney.
The Creative Industries Fund supports exceptional and innovative projects and activities of designers, makers, and cultural institutions in the creative industries.
Without the financial support of the Creative Industries Fund we would not have been able to join THNK and help grow our business, our team, and our leadership skills.
THNK supports leaders to develop innovative solutions to the world’s greatest societal challenges.
Without the supporting grant of THNK we would not have been able to join THNK. THNK helped us to grow our business, our team, and our leadership skills.
Silent gratitude isn't very much use to anyone ~
Concept, Narrative and Overall Design: Jennifer Kanary Nikolov(a)
Software and Game Engine Design: Konstantin Leonenko
Graphic Design: Katja van Stiphout
Structural Sound Design: Konstantin Leonenko
Atmospheric Sound Design: Pinar Temiz with thanks to ‘Free Sound’
Female Voices: 'The Oracle' Laura Schuster, 'Jamie' Jennifer Kanary Nikolov(a)
Male Voices: 'The Father' Alec Kopyt, 'The Mysterious Man' Nikola Nikolov, 'The Electronic Man' Konstantin Leonenko.
Design Cyberfold: Jennifer Kanary Nikolov(a)
Production Cyberfold1: Meg Grant
Design Cyberfold 2: Elian Smits
Production and Design Carrier: Nikola Nikolov, Anja Hertenberger, Lisa Randoe
Camera and Edit: Zoot Derks, Jeanette Groenendaal (Cinematic Scenes Filmed At Dasarts)
Technical Assistance and Advisors: Konstantin Leonenko (general advisor), Marco Wessel (system reproduction), Vladimir Grafov (systems architecture), Jan Trützschler (recording system), Tijs Ham (assistant advisor)
Hardware specifics: Vuzix 1200 VR, Logitec camera, Macbook Pro, Koss Porta Pro Headphones, Wiimote, Hyperjuice
Concept and Design: Jennifer Kanary Nikolov(a)
Labyrinth Build: Nikola Nikolov (Studio-Re-Creation)
LED Hallucination Poles: Rene Wassenburg-Schrikdraad (Hardware), Simon de Bakker - Simbits (Software)
Interactive Design Textile Wall Panels: Meg Grant
Textile Wall Art: Linda Maissan
Sound Design: Tijs Ham (Soundlings), Alina Sleebe (HKU), Pinar Temiz (Soundlings) with thanks to ‘Free Sound’
Hardware Sound: Directional speakers: ACOUSPADES by Miha Ciglar and co
Wall Curtains: Theatex
Special thanks: Ludo Winkelman for his ever-ready extra pair of hands and allowing THE LABYRINTH to grow in his studio and to ‘Everybody Loves Penguins’ for developing the first version of the LED Hallucination Poles with Rene Wassenburg.
Advisors Experience Design
Wouter Kusters, Jannemiek Tukker, Bas Labruyere, Tilly Gerritsma, Niels van Spaandonk, Theo Festen, Lucas Evers
Network and Organisation Support
Janssen: Sjaak Bloem, Eliane Lauwers, Gert Mannaert
Fonds Psychische Gezondheid: Ronald Gorter, Ben Roelands, Mariska Cornelisse, Mitzy Kieffer, Saskia Oskam
Waag Society Institute for Art, Science and Technology, Amsterdam: Sabine Wildevuur, Sacha van Tongeren, Lucas Evers, Raoul Wissink, Tom Demeyer, Peter Fekkes, Bas Withagen, Laurens Schuurkamp, Alex Schaub, Keimpe de Heer, Christine van den Horn, Frank Kresin, and everyone else.
TU Delft: Prof Pieter Jonker
AR Lab KABK: Yolande Kolstee
Living Lab: Gert-Jan Cornel
Plymouth University, Planetary Collegium: Antonio Caronia, Derrick de Kerckhove, Pier Luigi Capucci, Francesco Monico, Antonio Somaini, Jill Scott, Mike Phillips, Michael Punt, Roy Ascott and all my colleagues in particular Natasha Vita-More who inspired the idea of THE WEARABLE and Elif Ayiter for introducing me to the first psychosis simulation.