As time is the main protagonist of Ho’s wide range of practice, from film and video, to theatrical performances, this symposium proposes rethinking time and reimagining Southeast Asia and its regionalism.
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The Critical Dictionary of Ho Tzu Nyen_Contemporaneity and Regionality
Art Sonje Center x Singapore Art Museum(Singapore)
[Research and Creation]
Art Sonje Center
Art Sonje Center is one of the most dynamic platforms for visual culture in Korean contemporary art. Since its beginnings in 1995 (with an official opening in 1998), it has led the way with a variety of programs oriented toward the practice of curatorial discourse, new art production, and the creation of a global network for Korean contemporary art, including exhibitions, performances, film screenings, education, and publishing.
Art Sonje Center has grown together with the major practitioners of Korean contemporary art from generations spanning the 1990s until today, including such artists as Lee Bul, Choi Jeong Hwa, Do Ho Suh, Koo Jeong A, Haegue Yang, Mire Lee, and Kim Heecheon. In addition to its active efforts to share the work of such important global artists as Yayoi Kusama, Tracey Moffatt, Harun Farocki, and Marcel Broodthaers, it has also been working to create dynamic networks in the Korean and global art worlds.
With a dynamic history dating back more than 25 years, Art Sonje Center continues today with its efforts to explore new possibilities for art and knowledge production, while preparing for another move forward toward realizing new creative energy amid rapid changes in civilization and a state of ecological crisis. The center is a place for everyone who shares this world, boasting a love for contemporary art and culture that transcends ethnicity, generations, and gender.
Singapore Art Museum
Singapore Art Museum opened in 1996 as the first art museum in Singapore. Also known as SAM, we present contemporary art from a Southeast Asian perspective for artists, art lovers and the art curious in multiple venues across the island, including a new venue in the historic port area of Tanjong Pagar.
SAM is building one of the world's most important public collections of Southeast Asian contemporary art, with the aim of connecting the art and the artists to the public and future generations through exhibitions and programmes. SAM is working towards a humane and sustainable future by committing to responsible practices within its processes.
SAM will inspire humane and sustainable futures through transformative, thought-provoking and meaningful everyday encounters with art of our times.
SAM will present contemporary art from a Southeast Asian perspective in active dialogue, discovery and collaboration with our constituents; through our collection, research, exhibitions and programmes.
The Critical Dictionary of Ho Tzu Nyen_Contemporaneity and Regionality
Date: Tuesday 22 November, 2022, 14:00~18:30
Venue: Art Sonje Center, Art Hall (B1)
Organized by : Art Sonje Center
In collaboration with: Singapore Art Museum, Seoul National University
Asia Center, Seoul National University Institute for
Culture and Arts
Supported by: KOFICE (Korean Foundation for International Cultural Exchange)
- Kevin Chua (Texas Tech University, Associate Professor)
- Ho Tzu Nyen (Artist)
- Jang Un Kim (Artsonje Center, Director)
- Hyunjin Kim (Curator/Critics)
- Jung-Yeon Ma (Kansai University, Associate Professor)
- Shabbir Hussain Mustafa (Singapore Art Museum, Senior curator)
- Kenneth Tay (Singapore Art Museum, Assistant curator)
In The Critical Dictionary of Southeast Asia (2017–present) by Ho Tzu Nyen, an algorithmic editing system is a key player. It weaves together a rich tapestry of texts, music and found footage, generated by the term Southeast Asia that pertains to an alphabetized list of concepts. Every loop produces different permutations that open up endless possibilities of reconfiguring Southeast Asia. This disturbs the geopolitically driven concept of Southeast Asia as a homogeneous entity. Inspired by Ho’s artistic strategy of deconstructing Southeast Asia, this symposium attempts to produce loop variables to reimagine Southeast Asia and its regionalism. With its soft power, South Korea, as a major destination for labor migration in Southeast Asia over the last two decades, attempts to reconstruct strategic partnerships with Asean countries. This symposium aims to contribute to the ongoing process of interdisciplinary and comparative knowledge production in Southeast Asia.
As time is the main protagonist of Ho’s wide range of practice, from film and video, to theatrical performances, this symposium proposes rethinking time and reimagining Southeast Asia and its regionalism. Inspired by Ho’s artistic research for his new work on the colonial synchronization of time under the deceptive slogan of “Great Prosperity of East Asia” under the Japanese imperial system, this symposium poses the following questions: how does the notion of contemporaneity operate across the complex spheres of desires and power that constitute a particular regionality? Can we rearticulate Southeast Asia by deconstructing the complex temporal structures inherent in contemporaneity? In reimagining a new regionalization of Southeast Asia, how can we reinvent the notion of contemporaneity and our understanding of time?
Kevin Chua is Associate Professor of Eighteenth and Nineteenth-Century European Art and Southeast Asian Art at Texas Tech University (Lubbock, Texas, USA). His research and teaching interests include 18th-century French genre painting, the French Revolution, art and science, global modernism, and art-historical methodology. Having obtained his PhD in the History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley, he has held fellowships at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts (CASVA, Washington, DC) and the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). Dr Chua writes on modern and contemporary art in Southeast Asia, and has published essays on Simryn Gill, Ho Tzu Nyen, Charles Lim. His writings have appeared in journals such as Art History, Representations, Art Journal, Third Text, and Artforum.
HO TZU NYEN
Ho Tzu Nyen makes films, installations and performances that often begin as engagements with historical and theoretical texts. His recent works are populated by metamorphic figures such as the ‘weretiger’ ‹One or Several Tigers› (2017) and the ‘triple agent’ ‹The Nameless› (2015), under the rubric of The Critical Dictionary of Southeast, an ongoing meta project. Solo and group exhibitions include ‹Scheherazade, at Night› (Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France, 2022), ‹The 49th Hexagram› (Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA, 2021), ‹Night March of Hundred Monsters› (Toyota Municipal Museum of Art, Toyota City, Japan, 2021), ‹Voice of Void› (Yamaguchi Center for Art and Media [YCAM] Kyoto, Japan, 2021); ‹2 or 3 Tigers› (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany, 2017) and ‹The Cloud of Unknowing› (Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain, 2015). He was presented at the Singapore Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2011. Together with Taiwanese artist Hsu Chia- wei, he also co-curated ‹The Strangers from Beyond the Mountain and the Sea›, the 7th Asian Art Biennale, at the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts. Ho Tzu Nyen was awarded a DAAD Scholarship in Berlin (2014–2015) and the Grand Prize of the Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Signature Art Prize (2015).
Hyunjin Kim is a curator and writer in Seoul. Kim was recently the Artistic Director of Incheon Art Platform 2021 and the KADIST Lead Curator for Asia, with which she developed her three- year program Frequency of Tradition. She also worked as the curator of the Korean Pavilion at the 58th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia (2019), a co-curator of the 7th Gwangju Biennale (2008), and the Director of Arko Art Center, Seoul (2014–15). Her numerous curatorial projects include ‹Frequencies of Tradition› (KADIST, SF, 2022, /IAP, Incheon, 2021/ Guangdong Times Museum, Guangzhou, 2020), ‹History Has Failed Us, But No Matter› (Korean Pavilion, Venice Biennale, 2019), ‹2 or 3 Tigers› (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, 2017), ‹Gridded Currents› (Kukje Gallery, Seoul, 2017), ‹Tradition (Un)Realized› (Arko Art Center, Seoul, 2014). In addition, Kim was a member of the advisory board for the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin (2014–16) and a jury member for the DAAD Berlin artists- in-residence program (2017–18).
Jung-Yeon Ma graduated from Graduate School of Film and New Media, Tokyo University of the Arts with her doctoral dissertation on social implications of art and media technologies, which was later published as A Critical History of Media Art in Japan, (Artes Publishing, 2014). Her recent publications include Seiko Mikami: A Critical Reader (NTT Publishing, 2019: co-editor), “Exhibition Spaces Emitting Light and Sound: Contemporary Art and Image Media” (2019), “The Operating Method of a Panoramic Imagination” (2020), "Many Voices" (2022), and co- translated books such as Paik-Abe Correspondence (Nam June Paik Art Center, 2018) and Koki Tanaka: Reflective Notes [Recent Writings] (Art Sonje Center+Bijutsu Shuppansha, 2020-21). She is currently working as associate professor at the Department of Film and Media Studies, Kansai University, guest curator at National Museum of Art, Osaka, and Tokyo correspondent of Korean art magazine Wolganmisool.
SHABBIR HUSSAIN MUSTAFA
Shabbir Hussain Mustafa is interested in the role of the curator as storyteller. He explores narratives by engaging with artists and thinkers; often creating spaces of temporal frictions in which the act of recollection becomes a vector for imagined futures. Mustafa is Senior Curator at the Singapore Art Museum and National Gallery Singapore, where he builds links between the art of Southeast Asia and the world. In 2017, he was the recipient of the DAAD Artist-in-Berlin Award for his curatorial engagements. Among numerous exhibitions, he curated Charles Lim Yi Yong’s ‹SEA STATE› (2015) for the Singapore Pavilion of the 56th Venice Biennale and ‹Latiff Mohidin, Pago Pago(1960–1969)› (2018), a multimodal survey of the painter-poet's journeys across a divided Europe and insurgent Southeast Asia in the 1960s. He writes often.
Kenneth Tay is Assistant Curator at Singapore Art Museum. His recent exhibitions include ‹Living Pictures: Photography in Southeast Asia› (forthcoming December 2022) and ‹Lonely Vectors› (2022). He writes and researches broadly on the mediation of the global, and is the author of The Sea is All Highway (Temporary Press, 2019) and Flat Spaces (Temporary Press, 2019). He holds a MA in Media Studies from The New School.
David Teh is a writer, curator and Associate Professor at the National University of Singapore. His research spans art history, critical and cultural theory, with an emphasis on Southeast Asian modern and contemporary art. His recent curatorial projects have included ‹TRANSMISSION› (Bangkok, 2014), ‹Misfits: Pages from a Loose-leaf Modernity› (Berlin, 2017), ‹Returns› (12th Gwangju Biennale, 2018) and he is a co-curator (with Amar Kanwar and Ute Meta Bauer) of the 17th Istanbul Biennial (2022). David's writings have appeared in journals including Third Text, Artforum and Afterall. He is the author of Thai Art: Currencies of the Contemporary (MIT Press, 2017) and co-editor (with David Morris) of Artist-to-Artist: Independent Art Festivals in Chiang Mai 1992-98 (Afterall, 2018).