8 March 2019, Friday
12:00 – 16:00
In hidden corners, we are caught in the swirl
drips, leaks, ooze, goo, ebb and swell
bodies in currents never stay at rest.
On the first day of the mini-festival, SEA Currents presents a 4-hour durational session where a confluence of 7 international and diaspora artists will activate the site with performances that explore the body as/and archive-in-motion.
Performances are durational so you may leave and enter as you wish without disrupting the artists.
Performances may contain occasional nudity and adult content. When entering the space, you accept liability for your risk.
How wide the world is juxtaposes between interior/exterior and public/private of a safe architecture. The work is a reconstruction of the artist’s early childhood memory in Jakarta via his transit to London. It is motivated by the constant encounter with English gardens that sparked the recollection, though hazy, of the garden in his previous residence as well as the zen of Tokyo’s gyoen.
Approached through surrealist imagery, the work highlights the subconscious through the uncanny, elusive imaginaries of dream, fairy tale, and fantasy that propose the possibility of an interior world of the psyche that is as complex and ripe for exploration as the exterior.
The work takes the form of a pop-up exhibition/installation presenting artworks that seem to have gone awry and misplaced. One is a living sculpture, with a hint of erotica that is relatively passive and is seemingly contained within his own ‘world’. Equally detached from the audience is a silent dance by Hatsune Miku that is contained within a box, accompanied by a slideshow projection of topiary gardens. These elements are the results of dissecting wowaka’s 2017 comeback hit titled ア ンノウンマザーグース (Unknown Mother Goose) featuring Hatsune Miku. Parts of the song lyrics become the choreography of the work, and its title is borrowed from Hans Christian Andersen’s 1843 fairy tale The Ugly Duckling. How wide the world isis not linear and unlike prior existing narratives, is no longer directly representational.
How wide the world is shares the artist’s personal archive and transforms it into both an internal realm of the psyche and an exhibition of landscapes that can be utilized as a contingent space of refuge within which hides easter eggs related to art history, fetishism and popular culture.
Burong and Eunjung Kim
Eunjung Kim and Burong’s collaborative project Sit and Wait and Be Sweet is a live performance about becoming a future hybrid predator that makes a trap and is trapped simultaneously. Instead of discarding indigestible bubble gum residue, the performers use their fingers, lips, tongues and saliva to create viscous lines and webs. Experimenting with recycling sticky gum waste and making art from garbage, the two female artist bodies will create live, mutable abject art that cannot be consumed nor digested.
As the second most prolific street litter, gum waste costs 14 billion around the world to clean each year. A popular consumable, gum usually contains residue plastic materials developed by American industries in the 1960s. The very act of chewing gum offers no nutrition but a fleeting sensorial pleasure that remains as trash. The performance creates a trap in the space to reference predators that capture prey by stealth or strategy. Created using slow minimal movement, the gum mesh slowly forms to reference the symbolic social and psychological state of humanity entangled by the non-biodegradable waste they produce.
Towards All & Nothing is a tribute to Li Yuan Chia. Drawing from his life, his concept of the point as the origin and end of creation, this drawing performance contemplates on legacy and disappearance, the significance of holding onto and letting go, what endures and what is lost. Inspired by Li’s All & Nothing Show, a proposed performance that was cancelled but meant to be held at Hyde Park’s Speaker’s Corner in 1967 before his departure for Cumbria, the artist repetitively draws and erases large circles around her, with each circle marking a year of Li’s life in Cumbria, where he remained until his death in 1994. The repetitive action enables a kind of remembering, remembering Li Yuan Chia and connecting to him in another point in time.
Ada Xiaoyu Hao
NAUT-ADA: (m)other eye
NAUT-ADA is a case-study fictional character that uses a digital makeover to present itself as the material during the process of transforming from one material into another: eye turns into a mouth, which turns into the void, which turns into an experimental heterotopian environment, which turns into place of self-encounter, which turns into an optical instrument, which turns into a machine to see, which turns into a mouth to speak, which turns into a body of its archival presence, which turns into a display of the eerie self, which turns into a mirror, which turns into the echo of the silence, which turns into the abject of otherness. For SEA Currents, NAUT-ADA will use fiction as a method to discuss the currency of identity.
Through the composition and practice of being and becoming each speculative characters, NAUT-ADA will regain its consciousness, a collection of visual documentation reveals that the artist uses its own body as both the material and archive. Emphasizing on the idea: ‘body as material’ that conceptually and empirically expands from the traditional idea of a physical device to a live and active corporeal apparatus; ‘body as archive’ that embodies a virtual repository for live actions to be taking place in performance art. Intersecting with its social code and professional output as an artist, NAUT-ADA the virtual avatar or the narrator becomes impossible to distinguish from Ada the artist and researcher, and the archive material from the bodily experience or the fantasies of the narrator or the subjectivity of the self. If no artists can hide behind the work but must perform themselves too, then this case-study occupies the space between performance artist and artwork or the self and the others, making the performance of self not just necessary to “the work” of being a performance artist, but necessary to the “work” itself. Going along with what David Garcia wrote in the collective body of writing, Fiction as Method: If “what ifs” lead to satirical acts designed to unmask the workings of power and “as if” ‘leads to forms of activism that rather than demanding change. NAUT-ADA uses speculative fiction to act as if change has already occurred. Then by performing the practice of “as if” investigates the momentous challenge of how to situate and resituate the performative self in the unstable identity of the society.
Quek Jia Qi
Ghost to Ourselves is a durational participatory performance as a way of mapping, gifting and haunting the self. In utilising the body as a living archive and the lived experience as embedded knowledge, the experimental performance investigates the conditions in which our body carry traces of our past selves that our present selves may not yet recognise, from which we may better understand our own subjectivity. This will be a performative exercise of being (un)comfortable in our own skin, witnessing ourselves as embedded within living histories, and of learning to act responsibly for our imagined futures.
This is a durational, two-on-one / one-on-one performance. Visitors can come by during the indicated timeslots to watch or join in the performance.
Six Crosses is a durational participatory performance that offers a one-to-one experience of ‘Six Crosses’, a Chinese divination method stated in the I-Ching. Six lines or broken lines make a hexagram, and reading them can lead us to understand ‘synchronicity’, a term coined by the psychologist Carl Gustav Jung, who argues that we live in a space-time continuum. Six Crosses offers participants the opportunity to delve into their subconscious, and reconnect the dots between signs, symbols and reality.