17.7.2018

Cock, Cock.. Who’s There? – an honest perspective on sexual violence

Cock, Cock.. Who’s There? examines the full spectrum of male–female relations from intimacy to brutality. Filmmaker and artist Samira Elagoz takes on a difficult subject with courage and humour.

Finnish-Egyptian Elagoz graduated as a choreography BA from the Amsterdam University of the Arts in 2016. Her documentary-performance won the prestigious Prix Jardin d’Europe competition for emerging choreographers.

This is not a victim story

After her experience, Elagoz couldn’t find any stories about the aftermath she could identify with so she wanted to share her own. Elagoz says that touring with the performance around the world, meeting people and hearing the effects her work has had on the audience have transformed the experience.

– Perhaps not the memory of it, but most certainly its significance to my life.

She says it’s very rewarding to hear other victims tell that they see themselves in her work.

– With this work I wanted to offer an honest and accessible perspective on rape that would unburden the audience of the discomfort of seeing me as a victim, she says. Instead of telling a victim story, Elagoz wants to promote frank discussion about the actual topic.

– I did not want to be the subject, but rather to expose certain patterns and a culture of rape, she explains.

The piece aims to explore, not judge

When #metoo became viral last autumn, the performance became more current than ever. People shared their experiences on social media and named their abusers. Elagoz, however, never mentioned anyone by name.

– I was still at university when I made this work and I was told it would be illegal to name someone who had not been convicted of a crime. But more than that, it didn’t feel necessary to me. The work is more about my own process than a platform to accuse, she says.

Filmmaking as an act of empowerment

Elagoz says that the audience will see two documentaries: one on film, where the artist’s past self is emotive or confused, and the other on stage, where her present self is gifted with hindsight and informed by contemplation.

– I have found that film has the ability to show genuine stages of my life. Rather than being a mere reenactment or dramatisation, film grants the ability to show progression and change, especially when combined with my stage presence.

In the end, she found it very empowering to claim her story as material for the performance.

– I realised I could decide the course of reality and, in effect, make something that was restorative. On numerous occasions the performance elicited really touching stories from audience members who went through similar states and actions as I did. That aspect of sharing the work has meant a lot to me.


Cock, Cock.. Who’s there? on Hällä Stage on Wed 8th and Thu 9th of August.
Tickets and more information >>

Based on interviews by Alejandra Espinosa and Penny Rafferty
Glamcult 25.10.2017
Berlin Art Link 8.1.2018

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Cock, Cock.. Who’s There? – an honest perspective on sexual violence