(Y)our little book of fears workshop
Mathilde Benignus, Benignus,
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(Y)our little book of fears workshop

The workshops “(Y)our Little Book of Fears” aims to offer spaces for joint reflections on the many shapes that medial and societal fears are projected in. They have been developed since early 2015 by visual designer and thinker Caram Kapp, theater specialist Martha Bouziouri, documentary filmmaker Mathilde Benignus and illustration artist Murielle Biedrzycki.

I met Caram Kapp during an MIZ interactive storytelling workshop and a few months later the Charlie Hebdo’s attacks happen in our lives. We needed both to do something about it because we saw the raising fear and scary statements in the media flow all around. We felt like we urgently needed some creative answer. At least, begin to think of a creative form of answering the fear. So we decided to focus on this very point: how the media creates fear and shapes our very perception of the world. Caram Kapp created the original concept and developed the first methodology with theater specialist Martha Bouziouri. Later we adjust it together with Murielle Biedrzycki and me in order to propose a special workshop, called „laboratory of fear“ based on drawings sessions.


The first Laboratorium der Angst workshop took place in Berlin in April 2015 at the OKK (Organ Kritischer Kunst). The drawing results have been part of an exhibition during the „48h Neukölln“ in June 2015 at the Atelier l‘Enfant terrible. More on springlessons.org and here a video presenting the first edition of „The little book of fear“.


A brief description of the workshop, written by Caram Kapp :


Reframed in the context of a contemporary discourse of fear, Camus’s questions are “Do you, or do you not, wish to understand why you fear? And do you, or do you not wish to understand what you fear?”
In workshop sessions, we offer a starting point for an open discussion on representations and understandings of fear in the intersections between media, society and the individual. An exploration of its sources and the effect they have on our perception of challenges and possibilities that we encounter on daily paths.
We will also examine the verbal semantics of fear and the words associated with it, in a local and wider context- words associated with fear, the shift of meanings, terms that come to signify something that inspires terror and the dichotomies established to differentiate between something that is to be admired and that which is to be distrusted.
Through discussion, games, and drawing we will generate a semantic map and visual representations of fear, whether it is classified as angst or panic. The workshop will include inputs on medial fears, current events, the mechanisms underlying fear and an exchange on personal understandings of medial fear as a basis for discussion and sketching those fears.
The goal of the initial laboratory, which will be held over two days, is to collect inputs and ideas on how to develop the workshop format further, test the existing exercises and enjoy two days of fearless, common, playing.