MIKA KARHUInstallation 9.2.2013 – 10.3.2013

Between two lights, 2006-2013
Birch bark, glass fiber, burned wood and sound


Insecurity is always a threat to people. If the view of the future is full of risk factors − anxieties, the dimensions of which differ from reality but are experientially present − insecurity and fear become shared, affecting everything and occurring in all social activity.

Paradoxically, striving to achieve a safe society only increases the number of different risk factors. Prohibitions and regulations multiply with the result that they become "norms". The new ways of doing and thinking become established almost unnoticed. Because of the growth in the number of prohibitions and regulations, things previously regarded as normal behaviour are perceived as a threat.

A fear arises that general security will deteriorate and a belief emerges that society can no longer afford to maintain "social safety nets", as economic growth expectations will otherwise be compromised. Insecurity is awakened by the illusion that the entire fabric of society will collapse, while at the same time financial capital has to be invested in the disadvantaged − the same capital which could be allocated to areas investing in economic growth.

The commercialisation of insecurity and uncertainty creates a market of fear. In an economy of fear, commercial applications through which insecurity threats associated with the environment can be monitored and prevented are offered as a solution to people´s fear of insecurity.

Insecurity is increased by vague allusions to unpredictable threats. Anything and anyone could be the target of a risk threatening security. A vague threat becomes an instrument of social power affecting the lives of all ordinary people leaving them unable to do anything about it.

In my exhibition, I have dealt with the emotional tension of structural insecurity and its presence as an unconscious structure.

Mika Karhu
Artist, researcher