Against Rapture; Or, Rupturing POC relations – thirstDays No.05

Against Rapture; Or, Rupturing POC relations – thirstDays No.05

love, intimacy and (com)passion, in a geopolitical context
A monthly series of video, film, performance and ceremony events
Project curator/artist-in-residence Jayce Salloum

Curated by David Khang + Phanuel Antwi
Featuring dance works by ILL NANA / DiverseCity Dance Company
Film by Helen Lee & Video by Ho Tam

At: VIVO Media Arts Centre
2625 Kaslo Street, Vancouver
(near Broadway, walking distance from Renfrew Skytrain Station)
Free admission or stream it live

Facebook event page

Video documentation
Photo documentation

sallyThrough live dance, film and video we consider the acts and states of rupture and rapture. Questioning the obstacles in the ways which people of colour (POC) come to love, understand, and enjoy our differences – in peace and conflict, this program is committed to challenging the patterns and tropes that organize or deny narrative templates for POC relations in this city. Colour-blind discourses of love and compassion are invested in myopic ways of imagining relations, ways that deprive us of more inclusive visions of relations, and as a result, ignore power relations that make up processes and privileges of white normalcy. We aim to capture the possibilities for love rupturing beyond the limits of containment, challenging our audience not to pull away – from the touch, from experiencing rupture, and possibly even rapture.
~ Phanuel Antwi + David Khang

DAVID KHANG is an artist and art educator, whose favourite hobby might be dentistry. He has been performing as a dentist for 25 years, artist for 15, and art educator for 10. His visual, performance, and biological art practices include public recitations of political speeches at site-specific locations, being tied to butterflies and horses, and conducting scientific experiments with stem cells to produce micro-drawings and sculptures.

In 2016, he will retire from teaching art, and perhaps from art practice also. His next academic venture will be as a JD candidate at the UBC Faculty of Law, starting in September 2016.

PHANUEL ANTWI is a son, a lucky brother of two handsome, loving sisters, Agnes and Clara, a blessed uncle to a beautiful boy, Ezekiel, and niece, Chelsea. In addition, he works with dance, is a poet, activist, aesthete as well as an Assistant Professor in the Department of English at University of British Columbia. He has been politically active in organizing around a range of issues, including anti-immigration laws and practices, anti-racism and anti-capitalism, sex workers’ rights, labour rights within the university sphere and leadership opportunities for marginalized youth.
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thirstDays is a project conceived as the rain falls and covers us in a slick substance transduced from the skies, moist. How can this, how can we, contribute to the establishing of a momentum that may have once been here in waves or pieces but over time was squandered, and defeated, with the imposition of capital triumphantly declaring its colonial (un)consciousness in our enclave by the water. Surrounded by a possible serene beauty, grief and sadness, love and hate, what encounters do we inscribe into our psyches and into our beings, what can art do to fulfil a mandate of hope and agency. What can we contribute.

The project takes inspiration from the patterns of existence to look at the mechanisms which we are part of, and relate them to all we end up being, sharing, denying, repressing and preserving. We seek that which compels us: love, intimacy and (com)passion, explorations of the commons/(un)commons; empathy and subjectivities; nourishing sites and situations; modes of agency; and subjectivities of place.
We insist on diversity and threads of collaboration, strands of ‘collectivity’/affinity, emphasizing works that have a specificity of location with resonances/meanings for others within reach and beyond. There is a socio-psycho imperative here at this site – Vancouver – grounded in what is missing and manoeuvering the gaps while referencing the historic in the present(ness) – and of the moment – with the critical reimagining of the repressed and the projection of empathy and action. – Jayce Salloum

JAYCE SALLOUM, a grandson of Syrian immigrants from the Bekaa Valley (Lebanon) was born and raised on Sylix (Okanagan) territory in Kelowna, BC. His work has been exhibited in a wide array of venues, from the smallest unnamed storefronts in his dtes (downtown eastside) Vancouver neighbourhood to institutions such as the Musée du Louvre, Museum of Modern Art, Centre Georges Pompidou, National Gallery of Canada, Bienal De La Havana, Sharjah Biennial, Biennale of Sydney and the Rotterdam International Film Festival. Salloum is a recipient of the 2014 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.