Madness and Other Ghost Stories-Found Q&A

Hey Foundsters! As the opening of Found Fest get closer, we’re taking a closer look at some of the projects in our lineup and what they’re all about!

About Madness and Other Ghost Stories: Madness and monster movies. A gathering of writers and storytellers around a campfire, focusing first on care over creating. The beginnings of an anthology horror series, exploring the hauntings of our hearts and minds in new ways both more responsible and compelling. Find tickets to Madness and Other Ghost Stories HERE!

Madness and Other Ghost Stories features work from Levi Borejko, Sara Campos-Silvius, Althea Cunningham, Shyanne Duquette, Rhiannon Eldridge, Sophie Healey, Philip Hackborn, Josh Languedoc, Niuboi, and Calla Wright.

Common Ground (CG): What are some of the inspirations behind the piece you’re bring to Found?

Philip Hackborn, Curator (PH): Good horror sticks in the back of your mind, like a pill in the back of your throat. I think it’s because people at the top of their craft recognize that the real power of spectacle is that it is endlessly memorable. So when you can seamlessly attach meaning to a spectacle, the latter will act as a Trojan horse for the former, lodging it in the logic center. Several years ago, I saw a movie titled “I am the Pretty Thing that Lives in the House.” It entirely changed my relationship with horror. I always had an appreciation for it, but couldn’t move past my own skittish nature for the most part. But the pure poetry of that movie was haunting in more ways than one. Since then, my love has flowered. I’d like to share a bit of that with audiences, the poetry of horror and hauntings.

CG: What’s been the road leading up to Found for this work?

PH: This work began in 2022 when I was taking part in Good Women Dance Collective’s Creative Incubator and also mentoring under Lindsay Eales for mad-art creation. I was trying to build atmospheric horror elements for a different show, and was exploring how to use something that is usually considered a limitation as the point of generation itself. This work grew out of that. I wound up with not only a piece of writing that I wanted to share with audiences, but also a way of writing/working that I wanted to share with artists. After reading the work in a few places last year, I applied for Found Fest so that I could have a platform to gather other writers and readers to see what they could take from (and add to!) my fledgling process. My hope is that this will be a jump off point for future installations of a horror anthology series, and other endeavours in mad-art creation.

CG: What should audiences expect from your piece?

PH: Expect to sit in unease. Let discomfort creep in. Expect to face hard-to-process and hard-to-swallow thoughts. Expect obfuscating layers, smoke and mirrors. Poetry, stories, songs. And a damn fine gathering of writers and readers.

CG: What do you feel inspired by as an artist?

PH: The growing movement of focusing on community and care just as much as we focus on creativity. Bolder and better stories can be told in this way- more intimate, more vulnerable, and ultimately more true. I’m also driven forward by a sense of play and curiosity, as well as a fascination with “shower-thought style philosophy.”