Starting in January 2021, the interactive WORRY BOX PROJECT website will temporarily be unavailable, while the process of recoding the original Flash project to HTML5 is being finalized. A project demo can be viewed on this page.
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT is a participatory web-based archive of maternal anxieties based on the concept of a collective virtual worry box: visitors to the website are invited to anonymously submit a written worry; they are also able to view the anxieties and dreams of other women. As anonymous anxieties are collected, I hand-transcribe each submission onto a sheet of paper that is placed inside an actual physical box. This participatory stage of the project is ongoing, updated regularly with new worries until the box is full. The handwriting process is documented on video, and the resulting videos are returned to cyberspace to be viewed online. The time-consuming process of writing and videotaping the anxieties invests each submitted text with the labor of craft and a kind of sustained attention different from the automated posting of text onto an online bulletin board or forum. Posited against a contemporary motherhood culture that has become relentlessly optimistic and positive (often at odds with the anxieties of modern parenting), the virtual Worry Box Project provides a safe collective space for women to express fears, worries, and negative feelings about motherhood.
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT has also been exhibited as a gallery installation for three video screens.
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT in Studies in the Maternal
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT gallery installation (Complicated Labors, 2013)
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT and listening in SoundingOut! by Fabiola Hanna
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT in IDFA’s DocLab
THE WORRY BOX PROJECT in MIT Open Documentary Lab’s Docubase: an interactive curated database of the people, projects, and technologies transforming documentary in the digital age.
The Longest Shortest Time on THE WORRY BOX PROJECT