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Artspeak

HONG-KAI WANG

Based in Taipei, Taiwan, her research based practice confronts the politics of knowledge lost in colonial and diasporic encounters. Through experimental modes of sonic sociality, her multidisciplinary work seeks to conceive of other time-spaces at the intersection of lived experience, power and ‘listening’. Wang’s work critically interweaves the production of desire, histories of labor and economies of cohabitation. She has presented projects at Asia Art Biennial 2019; Theater Commons Tokyo 2019; Sculpture Center New York; documenta 14; Taipei Biennial 2016; Liquid Architecture; and the Museum of Modern Art.

Exhibitions

  • Quivering

    HONG-KAI WANG
    October 26–December 7, 2019

    Performative Lecture: ‘This is no country music’
    Friday, November 1, 6pm
    Narrated by Nadya Isabella, Aubin Kwon and Julia Dahee Hong.

    Hong-Kai Wang’s exhibition Quivering is a continuation of her work through experimental modes of sonic sociality. Wang describes Quivering as an open rehearsal, where the collective body becomes a conduit and site through which knowledge is produced, and the aggregate of small affinities becomes consequential. Operating on several different registers, ‘quivering’ – bodily, socially, politically, and geologically, Wang’s works are propositions that offer possibilities for a ‘choreography of survival’.

    The exhibition will include two of Wang’s previous works, Hazzeh, developed in Amman Jordan (2019) and a performance lecture This is no country music (Asia Art Biennial, 2019; Taichung City, Taiwan). Hazzeh, which means quivering/shaking in Arabic, speaks not only to the history of land dispossession in the region of Jordan and Palestine, but also to seismic/tectonic histories and geological time. The project convenes a group of women performers as they navigate between Jordan and Palestine. Utilizing Wang’s open rehearsal technique, tracing fault lines of the region, they query modes of critical feeling, summoning rhythms and memories of that region. This is no country music takes the form of a performative lecture/collective listening session, around the work of Taiwanese composer Koh Bunya, particularly his Earthquake Relief Song. Born in 1910, Bunya’s practice developed between China and Japan. Having been born in Taiwan under Japanese colonial rule, and living in China as the People’s Republic of China was founded, Bunya’s work has come to embody the complexity of the deeply entangled history of this region.

    Both Hazzeh and This is no country music grapple with lines of query around statelessness, borders, bodies and lived experience. Wang’s methodological approach engages voice, vibration, and practices of listening combined with geological histories of natural disasters. Geological time offers a depth, that requires a different comprehension of time, towards an immediate binary of human/non-human co-existence.

    As an artist-in-residence at Artspeak, Wang will continue to build upon her research, developing methodologies that will take into consideration our location on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh, and this region being situated on the Cascadia Subduction Zone, Pacific Ring of Fire. Working with a choir and members of the UBC Seismology department, Wang will trace points of convergence, of histories, fault lines, through a collective embodied praxis examining voice and vibration.

    *Acknowledgements*

    Hazzeh conceived of by Hong Kai Wang was commissioned by Mohammad and Mahera Abu Ghazaleh Foundation for Art & Culture.

    Lyrics selected from ‘Palestinian Mournings’ by Hassan Atari

    Made possible with the assistance of Moawiah Bajes, May Marie & Rea Zakhour

    Performed by May Marie, Ghazal Awdeh, Henna Haj Hassan, Ibtisam Ahmad & Raheeq Hafez

    Special thanks to Övül Ö. Durmusoglu, Qais Assali, Shuruq Harb & Hamze Al Aqrabawi, and for the generous support of the National Culture and Arts Foundation Taiwan, and Recollective: Vancouver Independent Archives Week.

Talks & Events

  • This is no country music

    HONG-KAI WANG
    November 1, 2019

    Narrated by Nadya Isabella, Aubin Kwon and Julia Dahee Hong.
    Photos by Sungpil Yoon

    This is no country music takes the form of a performative lecture/collective listening session, around the work of Taiwanese vocalist and composer Koh Bunya, particularly his Earthquake Relief Song. Born in 1910, Bunya’s practice developed between China and Japan. Having been born in Taiwan under Japanese colonial rule, and living in China as the People’s Republic of China was founded, Bunya’s work has come to embody the complexity of the deeply entangled history of this region. This is no country music grapple with lines of query around statelessness, borders, bodies and lived experience. Wang’s methodological approach engages voice, vibration, and practices of listening combined with geological histories of natural disasters. Geological time offers a depth, that requires a different comprehension of time, towards an immediate binary of human/non-human co-existence.

    This project was commissioned by the Asian Art Biennial and Tokyo Theatre Commons. The first iteration of This is no country music was presented at Theatre Commons Tokyo (March 2019). An iteration of this project is also included as part of the Asian Art Biennial: The Strangers from beyond the Mountain and the Sea, Taichung City, Taiwan (2019).

    As an artist-in-residence at Artspeak, Wang will continue to build upon her research, developing methodologies that will take into consideration our location on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh, and this region being situated on the Cascadia Subduction Zone, Pacific Ring of Fire.

     *Recollective: Vancouver Independent Archives Week
    This event is part of an ongoing series of Recollective: Vancouver Independent Archives Week. A series of free public events, panels, conversations, and screenings that highlight artist-run centre archives, artists working with archives, and the intersections between contemporary art practices and social movements in Vancouver and beyond.

    In its 2019 programming year, Recollective will look beyond Vancouver to host a series of national and international presenters and respondents to examine these issues in a range of global contexts.

    Special thanks to Dan Pon and Emma Metcalfe-Hurst.