Eat Rice Yet? – thirstDays No.11
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
THURSDAY DECEMBER 15 7.30pm
Curated by Henry Tsang + Diyan Achjadi
Fred Wah, Meeru Dhalwala, Vanessa Richards, Michael Rakowitz, Chee Wang Ng 吳子雲
Our program of words, music and food will address the struggle towards generosity and openness in an attempt to provide different ways of nourishment. Gathering around food offers the potential of a communal experience, and can provide a physical bridge towards building real, corporeal community. Shared experiences create space for conversation that allows for both a sense of mutual understanding as well as an articulation of differences. Our title, Eat Rice Yet?, is the ubiquitous, pedestrian way of greeting one another in Chinese culture. One asks how you are by inquiring whether you are hungry, whether you have been fed; because if you have not, then we need to be concerned. That rice represents food is emblematic of its role in Chinese cuisine, culture and identity, as it is with over half of the world’s population that considers this ancient grain their staple, their visceral base, their place of comfort and satisfaction.
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DIYAN ACHJADI was born in Jakarta, Indonesia to a West-Javanese father and English-Canadian mother. Her work examines historical prints and surface ornamentation, tracing narratives of cross-cultural imaginings, influences and contaminations, retranslating and reinterpreting them through drawing, printmaking and animation. Diyan is an Associate Professor at Emily Carr University of Art and Design.
HENRY TSANG is a visual and media artist and occasional curator based in Vancouver. His artworks incorporate digital media, video, photography, language and sculptural elements that follow the relationship between the public, community and identity through global flows of people, culture and capital. Projects include Maraya, an eight-year collaboration that investigates the reappearance of Vancouver’s False Creek in Dubai as the Dubai Marina; Orange County, and Olympus, shot in California, Beijing, Torino and Vancouver, exploring overlapping urban and socio-political spaces; and Welcome to the Land of Light, a public artwork along Vancouver’s seawall that underscores Chinook Jargon, a 19th Century local trade language, and the English that replaced it. Henry is an Associate Professor at Emily Carr University of Art & Design.
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.