topic

Queer Lives

"Queerness is that thing that lets us feel that this world is not enough, that indeed something is missing." -- José Esteban Muñoz, Cruising Utopia (2009)

Let's Dance America! (excerpt)

Jeffrey Augustine Songco

2016 Digital video Duration: 9 min. Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Jeffrey Augustine Songco

b. 1983
image description
  • See All Works
  • visit website

Jeffrey Augustine Songco is a multi-media artist. Born and raised in New Jersey, USA, to immigrant Filipino parents, his artistic identity developed at a young age with training in classical ballet, voice, and musical theater. Today, he uses these disciplines in the performing arts to produce stories as works of visual art. He holds a B.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon University and an M.F.A. from San Francisco Art Institute. He has exhibited throughout the United States, including the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco and the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts in Grand Rapids. His writings have appeared in Art21 Blog, Bad at Sports, The Huffington Post, and Hyperallergic. He would like to be the US representative to the 2023 Venice Biennale. He currently lives and works in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

My obsessive consumption of superficial goods translates into the production of peculiar appropriation. There’s a lot of stuff out there to play with — things (as objects) and ideas (as language) are my materials. I'm interested in physical behavior, emotional narratives, and performed identities. I believe my artwork produces an infectious feeling of anxiety that can only be alleviated by a) the acceptance of the fluidity of meaning, 2) the impossibility of fully comprehending the absurd, and d) the inability to control your own laughter.

As the commissioned artist for the Center for Art and Thought’s exhibition Queer Sites and Sounds, I created a limited edition digital print titled Confessional. This work is the third iteration in a series of photographic prints depicting my “bag head character” juxtaposed with text from a grand narrative.

In 2012, I wrote my first screenplay titled The Host. The title refers to the protagonist – a white, affluent, suburban mom who is the beloved host on a popular home-shopping television network. The title also refers to the bread that is transformed into the body of Christ and eaten during Catholic mass. Throughout the film, the woman is negotiating her identity as a devout Catholic woman and as a mom to her recently outed college-aged son. In front of a million television viewers, she goes through her own transformation, performing a role that caters to a culturally conservative America, while knowing full well that her gay son is quietly shifting her away from those values. When I wrote the screenplay, I was just a writer with a dream, but I was also an artist with a camera. I created the triptych Hosanna as a way to visually manifest the text of The Host. In Hosanna, quotations from The Host flank the solitary white figure that is performing the role of the host. “Hosanna” is a biblical word that is shouted to express joy and adoration – an old-timer word for “OMG” or a phrase a woman might say when she sees sparkling jewelry.

By dressing in all white and placing a bag on my head, I enact a queer performance of the protagonist – a beautiful and empowered heterosexual white woman with personal anxiety that looms around her as she fulfills her own performance of self. This same concept can be used with the next iteration in the series, the diptych God Bless (Miss) America. I didn’t write a screenplay, but I’ve always been transfixed by pageantry – count me in as part of the demographic obsessed with TLC’s Toddlers and Tiaras who can also tell the difference between the Miss America and Miss USA pageants. The narrative of beauty pageants is so common in American popular culture that it has become a cliché, so I chose to use a clichéd question as the text within the artwork. In front of millions of television viewers, a pageant contestant must answer a seemingly bleak question with something that caters to the pageant judges and, ultimately, the identity of the nation.

I’m currently in the process of writing a screenplay titled The Cast, a dramatic film that focuses on a cast member of a reality television show about five affluent white married women living in San Francisco. Queer Sites and Sounds is the perfect site to visually translate the text of The Cast like I had done with The Host. My new artwork is titled Confessional, which refers to the idea of the Catholic Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation. Sharing and confessing sins to a priest in a small room allows the sinner to be absolved from mortal sins and avoid Hell. Decades ago, the word “confessional” was introduced to reality television when subjects of the show were taken aside from the main activity into a small room, and asked to share and confess how they felt about the events that just occurred. Subjects broke the fourth wall and spoke directly to the camera to share all their feelings and provide a proper narrative to the plot. The confessional has aesthetically evolved into what it is today, with the confessional interview being highly stylized and elaborately produced. Bravo Television’s The Real Housewives series provides fantastic examples of stylized confessionals, with characters confessing in front of luxurious backgrounds.

I’ve always had an interest in – some would say obsession with – white people. While I shine the spotlight on an American ideal, I don’t deny the multiple references to a darker side of white America: Christian extremism, political nationalism, military torture, and white supremacy. In Confessional, I chose to display a quotation that revealed a dramatic side of the reality show – adultery. This kind of saturated American identity is the root of my bag head character, which ultimately plays the role of an anonymous white person subject to the projections of any given story.

location

X
  • Born: New Jersey, USA
  • Based: Grand Rapids, MI

comments

X

Let's Dance America! (screenshot)

Jeffrey Augustine Songco

2016 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Jeffrey Augustine Songco

b. 1983
image description
  • See All Works
  • visit website

Jeffrey Augustine Songco is a multi-media artist. Born and raised in New Jersey, USA, to immigrant Filipino parents, his artistic identity developed at a young age with training in classical ballet, voice, and musical theater. Today, he uses these disciplines in the performing arts to produce stories as works of visual art. He holds a B.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon University and an M.F.A. from San Francisco Art Institute. He has exhibited throughout the United States, including the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco and the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts in Grand Rapids. His writings have appeared in Art21 Blog, Bad at Sports, The Huffington Post, and Hyperallergic. He would like to be the US representative to the 2023 Venice Biennale. He currently lives and works in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

My obsessive consumption of superficial goods translates into the production of peculiar appropriation. There’s a lot of stuff out there to play with — things (as objects) and ideas (as language) are my materials. I'm interested in physical behavior, emotional narratives, and performed identities. I believe my artwork produces an infectious feeling of anxiety that can only be alleviated by a) the acceptance of the fluidity of meaning, 2) the impossibility of fully comprehending the absurd, and d) the inability to control your own laughter.

As the commissioned artist for the Center for Art and Thought’s exhibition Queer Sites and Sounds, I created a limited edition digital print titled Confessional. This work is the third iteration in a series of photographic prints depicting my “bag head character” juxtaposed with text from a grand narrative.

In 2012, I wrote my first screenplay titled The Host. The title refers to the protagonist – a white, affluent, suburban mom who is the beloved host on a popular home-shopping television network. The title also refers to the bread that is transformed into the body of Christ and eaten during Catholic mass. Throughout the film, the woman is negotiating her identity as a devout Catholic woman and as a mom to her recently outed college-aged son. In front of a million television viewers, she goes through her own transformation, performing a role that caters to a culturally conservative America, while knowing full well that her gay son is quietly shifting her away from those values. When I wrote the screenplay, I was just a writer with a dream, but I was also an artist with a camera. I created the triptych Hosanna as a way to visually manifest the text of The Host. In Hosanna, quotations from The Host flank the solitary white figure that is performing the role of the host. “Hosanna” is a biblical word that is shouted to express joy and adoration – an old-timer word for “OMG” or a phrase a woman might say when she sees sparkling jewelry.

By dressing in all white and placing a bag on my head, I enact a queer performance of the protagonist – a beautiful and empowered heterosexual white woman with personal anxiety that looms around her as she fulfills her own performance of self. This same concept can be used with the next iteration in the series, the diptych God Bless (Miss) America. I didn’t write a screenplay, but I’ve always been transfixed by pageantry – count me in as part of the demographic obsessed with TLC’s Toddlers and Tiaras who can also tell the difference between the Miss America and Miss USA pageants. The narrative of beauty pageants is so common in American popular culture that it has become a cliché, so I chose to use a clichéd question as the text within the artwork. In front of millions of television viewers, a pageant contestant must answer a seemingly bleak question with something that caters to the pageant judges and, ultimately, the identity of the nation.

I’m currently in the process of writing a screenplay titled The Cast, a dramatic film that focuses on a cast member of a reality television show about five affluent white married women living in San Francisco. Queer Sites and Sounds is the perfect site to visually translate the text of The Cast like I had done with The Host. My new artwork is titled Confessional, which refers to the idea of the Catholic Sacrament of Penance and Reconciliation. Sharing and confessing sins to a priest in a small room allows the sinner to be absolved from mortal sins and avoid Hell. Decades ago, the word “confessional” was introduced to reality television when subjects of the show were taken aside from the main activity into a small room, and asked to share and confess how they felt about the events that just occurred. Subjects broke the fourth wall and spoke directly to the camera to share all their feelings and provide a proper narrative to the plot. The confessional has aesthetically evolved into what it is today, with the confessional interview being highly stylized and elaborately produced. Bravo Television’s The Real Housewives series provides fantastic examples of stylized confessionals, with characters confessing in front of luxurious backgrounds.

I’ve always had an interest in – some would say obsession with – white people. While I shine the spotlight on an American ideal, I don’t deny the multiple references to a darker side of white America: Christian extremism, political nationalism, military torture, and white supremacy. In Confessional, I chose to display a quotation that revealed a dramatic side of the reality show – adultery. This kind of saturated American identity is the root of my bag head character, which ultimately plays the role of an anonymous white person subject to the projections of any given story.

location

X
  • Born: New Jersey, USA
  • Based: Grand Rapids, MI

comments

X

heARTbreak! (teaser)

Việt Lê

2017 HD video, color, sound, projection, dimensions vary Duration: 1 min. 21 sec. Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Việt Lê

b. 1976

Việt Lê is an artist, writer, and curator. Lê is an assistant professor in Visual Studies at the California College of the Arts (San Francisco|Oakland). He has been published in positions: asia critique; Crab Orchard Review; American Quarterly; Amerasia Journal; Art Journal; and the anthologies Writing from the Perfume River (2010), Strange Cargo (2010), The Spaces Between Us (2010), Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art (2012), among others.

Recent solo exhibitions include lovebang! (Kellogg University Art Gallery, Los Angeles, 2016), vestige (H Gallery Bangkok, 2015), and tan nÁRT cõi lòng | heARTbreak! (Nhà Sàn Collective, Hà Nội). Lê has presented his work at The Banff Centre, Alberta, Canada; University of California-Los Angeles Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA; DoBaeBacSa Gallery, Seoul, Korea; Japan Foundation, Việt Nam; 1a Space, Hong Kong; Bangkok Art & Cultural Center (BACC), Thailand; Civitella Ranieri, Italy; Shanghai Biennale, China; Rio Gay Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; among other venues.

Lê curated Miss Saigon with the Wind (Highways, Santa Monica, 2005) and Charlie Don’t Surf! (Centre A, Vancouver, BC, 2005). He co-curated humor us (with Leta Ming and Yong Soon Min; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, LA, CA, 2008), transPOP: Korea Việt Nam Remix (with Yong Soon Min; Seoul, Sài Gòn, Irvine, San Francisco, 2008-09), the 2012 Taipei Kuandu Biennale and Love in the Time of War (University of California, Santa Barbara and SF Camerawork). He co-organized the 2015 Artistic Interventions conference (Ph.D. workshops and symposium) in Hong Kong. Lê's projects have been featured in Newsweek Asia, The Korea Herald, The Toronto Star, Huffington Post, China Daily, Orange County Register, Bangkok Post, and The Cambodia Daily.

Lê received his M.F.A. from the University of California, Irvine, where he has also taught Studio Art and Visual Culture courses. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (Department of American Studies & Ethnicity). His writing has been translated into Chinese, German, Khmer, and Vietnamese.

The heARTbreak! 2016 sexperimental video (the teaser featured here) is the outgrowth of Việt Lê’s 2014 solo exhibition at H Project Space, Bangkok, comprised of three related interventions based on the 125 year-old building’s former life as a colonial-era Christian orphanage. Queerying time and space, the inter-related projects/ interventions reference the former orphange site, recent protests, as well as Southeast Asian refugee camps in Thailand (2015 was the 40th anniversary of the military engagements in Southeast Asia).

In a durational performance (24-29 December, 2014), the artist “occupied” H Project Space, conducted research, as well as embodied the historic figure of a lovelorn orphan who once lived in the building. During the meditative performance, Lê strung together beads—religious and otherwise—to form (with the assistance of community volunteers) another “curtain” to be hung up inside the space. Dealing with longing and loss, desire and despair, the works reference Felix Gonzales Torres’ mournful installations of curtains (Untitled [Blue Curtains], 1989/9) and beads (Untitled [Golden], 1995) as well as Lawrence Chua’s “sinsational” novel Gold by the Inch.

The artist invited the public to donate beads as well as to string together these beads with him. Using the keywords of refuge, refuse and refusal, the project also invites the public to come interact with the artist and create altars for loved ones or bring simple offerings—objects, drawings, gestures. Set to coincide with the Christmas holiday season, Lê examines the history of Christianity (among other spiritual practices) in Thailand, including H Gallery’s history as a former orphanage and the untimely death of the orphan.

Lastly, within the space, Lê aims to stage the second installment of his LOVE BANG! (a “faux phở-real”) music video trilogy. heART/break! is a sexperimental art music video for an original multi-lingual “hip pop” song (Vietnamese, Thai, Khmer and English). Featuring time-traveling, star-crossed figures (orphans, refugees), the video interweaves the past and the present. The new song pays tongue-in-cheek homage to Thai and Vietnamese tunes as well as Western pop songs, which are ever-present on the streets of Southeast Asia.

These strings of associations (pun intended) are a metaphorical means to look at the layered, traumatized topographies of Southeast Asian identities. The artist explores the divides—and connections—between spirituality and sexuality, the physical and the metaphysical.

location

X
  • Born: Sài Gòn
  • Based:

comments

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2 of heARTs (scissor sisters)

Việt Lê

2016 C-print Dimensions variable Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Việt Lê

b. 1976

Việt Lê is an artist, writer, and curator. Lê is an assistant professor in Visual Studies at the California College of the Arts (San Francisco|Oakland). He has been published in positions: asia critique; Crab Orchard Review; American Quarterly; Amerasia Journal; Art Journal; and the anthologies Writing from the Perfume River (2010), Strange Cargo (2010), The Spaces Between Us (2010), Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art (2012), among others.

Recent solo exhibitions include lovebang! (Kellogg University Art Gallery, Los Angeles, 2016), vestige (H Gallery Bangkok, 2015), and tan nÁRT cõi lòng | heARTbreak! (Nhà Sàn Collective, Hà Nội). Lê has presented his work at The Banff Centre, Alberta, Canada; University of California-Los Angeles Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA; DoBaeBacSa Gallery, Seoul, Korea; Japan Foundation, Việt Nam; 1a Space, Hong Kong; Bangkok Art & Cultural Center (BACC), Thailand; Civitella Ranieri, Italy; Shanghai Biennale, China; Rio Gay Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; among other venues.

Lê curated Miss Saigon with the Wind (Highways, Santa Monica, 2005) and Charlie Don’t Surf! (Centre A, Vancouver, BC, 2005). He co-curated humor us (with Leta Ming and Yong Soon Min; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, LA, CA, 2008), transPOP: Korea Việt Nam Remix (with Yong Soon Min; Seoul, Sài Gòn, Irvine, San Francisco, 2008-09), the 2012 Taipei Kuandu Biennale and Love in the Time of War (University of California, Santa Barbara and SF Camerawork). He co-organized the 2015 Artistic Interventions conference (Ph.D. workshops and symposium) in Hong Kong. Lê's projects have been featured in Newsweek Asia, The Korea Herald, The Toronto Star, Huffington Post, China Daily, Orange County Register, Bangkok Post, and The Cambodia Daily.

Lê received his M.F.A. from the University of California, Irvine, where he has also taught Studio Art and Visual Culture courses. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (Department of American Studies & Ethnicity). His writing has been translated into Chinese, German, Khmer, and Vietnamese.

The heARTbreak! 2016 sexperimental video (the teaser featured here) is the outgrowth of Việt Lê’s 2014 solo exhibition at H Project Space, Bangkok, comprised of three related interventions based on the 125 year-old building’s former life as a colonial-era Christian orphanage. Queerying time and space, the inter-related projects/ interventions reference the former orphange site, recent protests, as well as Southeast Asian refugee camps in Thailand (2015 was the 40th anniversary of the military engagements in Southeast Asia).

In a durational performance (24-29 December, 2014), the artist “occupied” H Project Space, conducted research, as well as embodied the historic figure of a lovelorn orphan who once lived in the building. During the meditative performance, Lê strung together beads—religious and otherwise—to form (with the assistance of community volunteers) another “curtain” to be hung up inside the space. Dealing with longing and loss, desire and despair, the works reference Felix Gonzales Torres’ mournful installations of curtains (Untitled [Blue Curtains], 1989/9) and beads (Untitled [Golden], 1995) as well as Lawrence Chua’s “sinsational” novel Gold by the Inch.

The artist invited the public to donate beads as well as to string together these beads with him. Using the keywords of refuge, refuse and refusal, the project also invites the public to come interact with the artist and create altars for loved ones or bring simple offerings—objects, drawings, gestures. Set to coincide with the Christmas holiday season, Lê examines the history of Christianity (among other spiritual practices) in Thailand, including H Gallery’s history as a former orphanage and the untimely death of the orphan.

Lastly, within the space, Lê aims to stage the second installment of his LOVE BANG! (a “faux phở-real”) music video trilogy. heART/break! is a sexperimental art music video for an original multi-lingual “hip pop” song (Vietnamese, Thai, Khmer and English). Featuring time-traveling, star-crossed figures (orphans, refugees), the video interweaves the past and the present. The new song pays tongue-in-cheek homage to Thai and Vietnamese tunes as well as Western pop songs, which are ever-present on the streets of Southeast Asia.

These strings of associations (pun intended) are a metaphorical means to look at the layered, traumatized topographies of Southeast Asian identities. The artist explores the divides—and connections—between spirituality and sexuality, the physical and the metaphysical.

location

X
  • Born: Sài Gòn
  • Based:

comments

X

heARTbreak! (installation view)

Việt Lê

2016 Mixed media, HD video, color sound Duration: 5 min. 25 sec. Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Việt Lê

b. 1976

Việt Lê is an artist, writer, and curator. Lê is an assistant professor in Visual Studies at the California College of the Arts (San Francisco|Oakland). He has been published in positions: asia critique; Crab Orchard Review; American Quarterly; Amerasia Journal; Art Journal; and the anthologies Writing from the Perfume River (2010), Strange Cargo (2010), The Spaces Between Us (2010), Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art (2012), among others.

Recent solo exhibitions include lovebang! (Kellogg University Art Gallery, Los Angeles, 2016), vestige (H Gallery Bangkok, 2015), and tan nÁRT cõi lòng | heARTbreak! (Nhà Sàn Collective, Hà Nội). Lê has presented his work at The Banff Centre, Alberta, Canada; University of California-Los Angeles Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA; DoBaeBacSa Gallery, Seoul, Korea; Japan Foundation, Việt Nam; 1a Space, Hong Kong; Bangkok Art & Cultural Center (BACC), Thailand; Civitella Ranieri, Italy; Shanghai Biennale, China; Rio Gay Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; among other venues.

Lê curated Miss Saigon with the Wind (Highways, Santa Monica, 2005) and Charlie Don’t Surf! (Centre A, Vancouver, BC, 2005). He co-curated humor us (with Leta Ming and Yong Soon Min; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, LA, CA, 2008), transPOP: Korea Việt Nam Remix (with Yong Soon Min; Seoul, Sài Gòn, Irvine, San Francisco, 2008-09), the 2012 Taipei Kuandu Biennale and Love in the Time of War (University of California, Santa Barbara and SF Camerawork). He co-organized the 2015 Artistic Interventions conference (Ph.D. workshops and symposium) in Hong Kong. Lê's projects have been featured in Newsweek Asia, The Korea Herald, The Toronto Star, Huffington Post, China Daily, Orange County Register, Bangkok Post, and The Cambodia Daily.

Lê received his M.F.A. from the University of California, Irvine, where he has also taught Studio Art and Visual Culture courses. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (Department of American Studies & Ethnicity). His writing has been translated into Chinese, German, Khmer, and Vietnamese.

The heARTbreak! 2016 sexperimental video (the teaser featured here) is the outgrowth of Việt Lê’s 2014 solo exhibition at H Project Space, Bangkok, comprised of three related interventions based on the 125 year-old building’s former life as a colonial-era Christian orphanage. Queerying time and space, the inter-related projects/ interventions reference the former orphange site, recent protests, as well as Southeast Asian refugee camps in Thailand (2015 was the 40th anniversary of the military engagements in Southeast Asia).

In a durational performance (24-29 December, 2014), the artist “occupied” H Project Space, conducted research, as well as embodied the historic figure of a lovelorn orphan who once lived in the building. During the meditative performance, Lê strung together beads—religious and otherwise—to form (with the assistance of community volunteers) another “curtain” to be hung up inside the space. Dealing with longing and loss, desire and despair, the works reference Felix Gonzales Torres’ mournful installations of curtains (Untitled [Blue Curtains], 1989/9) and beads (Untitled [Golden], 1995) as well as Lawrence Chua’s “sinsational” novel Gold by the Inch.

The artist invited the public to donate beads as well as to string together these beads with him. Using the keywords of refuge, refuse and refusal, the project also invites the public to come interact with the artist and create altars for loved ones or bring simple offerings—objects, drawings, gestures. Set to coincide with the Christmas holiday season, Lê examines the history of Christianity (among other spiritual practices) in Thailand, including H Gallery’s history as a former orphanage and the untimely death of the orphan.

Lastly, within the space, Lê aims to stage the second installment of his LOVE BANG! (a “faux phở-real”) music video trilogy. heART/break! is a sexperimental art music video for an original multi-lingual “hip pop” song (Vietnamese, Thai, Khmer and English). Featuring time-traveling, star-crossed figures (orphans, refugees), the video interweaves the past and the present. The new song pays tongue-in-cheek homage to Thai and Vietnamese tunes as well as Western pop songs, which are ever-present on the streets of Southeast Asia.

These strings of associations (pun intended) are a metaphorical means to look at the layered, traumatized topographies of Southeast Asian identities. The artist explores the divides—and connections—between spirituality and sexuality, the physical and the metaphysical.

location

X
  • Born: Sài Gòn
  • Based:

comments

X

lonely heARTsclub band(aid)

Việt Lê

2017 Vinyl Banner (edition of 3) 90” X 60” Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Việt Lê

b. 1976

Việt Lê is an artist, writer, and curator. Lê is an assistant professor in Visual Studies at the California College of the Arts (San Francisco|Oakland). He has been published in positions: asia critique; Crab Orchard Review; American Quarterly; Amerasia Journal; Art Journal; and the anthologies Writing from the Perfume River (2010), Strange Cargo (2010), The Spaces Between Us (2010), Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian Art (2012), among others.

Recent solo exhibitions include lovebang! (Kellogg University Art Gallery, Los Angeles, 2016), vestige (H Gallery Bangkok, 2015), and tan nÁRT cõi lòng | heARTbreak! (Nhà Sàn Collective, Hà Nội). Lê has presented his work at The Banff Centre, Alberta, Canada; University of California-Los Angeles Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, USA; DoBaeBacSa Gallery, Seoul, Korea; Japan Foundation, Việt Nam; 1a Space, Hong Kong; Bangkok Art & Cultural Center (BACC), Thailand; Civitella Ranieri, Italy; Shanghai Biennale, China; Rio Gay Film Festival, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; among other venues.

Lê curated Miss Saigon with the Wind (Highways, Santa Monica, 2005) and Charlie Don’t Surf! (Centre A, Vancouver, BC, 2005). He co-curated humor us (with Leta Ming and Yong Soon Min; Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery, LA, CA, 2008), transPOP: Korea Việt Nam Remix (with Yong Soon Min; Seoul, Sài Gòn, Irvine, San Francisco, 2008-09), the 2012 Taipei Kuandu Biennale and Love in the Time of War (University of California, Santa Barbara and SF Camerawork). He co-organized the 2015 Artistic Interventions conference (Ph.D. workshops and symposium) in Hong Kong. Lê's projects have been featured in Newsweek Asia, The Korea Herald, The Toronto Star, Huffington Post, China Daily, Orange County Register, Bangkok Post, and The Cambodia Daily.

Lê received his M.F.A. from the University of California, Irvine, where he has also taught Studio Art and Visual Culture courses. He received his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Southern California (Department of American Studies & Ethnicity). His writing has been translated into Chinese, German, Khmer, and Vietnamese.

The heARTbreak! 2016 sexperimental video (the teaser featured here) is the outgrowth of Việt Lê’s 2014 solo exhibition at H Project Space, Bangkok, comprised of three related interventions based on the 125 year-old building’s former life as a colonial-era Christian orphanage. Queerying time and space, the inter-related projects/ interventions reference the former orphange site, recent protests, as well as Southeast Asian refugee camps in Thailand (2015 was the 40th anniversary of the military engagements in Southeast Asia).

In a durational performance (24-29 December, 2014), the artist “occupied” H Project Space, conducted research, as well as embodied the historic figure of a lovelorn orphan who once lived in the building. During the meditative performance, Lê strung together beads—religious and otherwise—to form (with the assistance of community volunteers) another “curtain” to be hung up inside the space. Dealing with longing and loss, desire and despair, the works reference Felix Gonzales Torres’ mournful installations of curtains (Untitled [Blue Curtains], 1989/9) and beads (Untitled [Golden], 1995) as well as Lawrence Chua’s “sinsational” novel Gold by the Inch.

The artist invited the public to donate beads as well as to string together these beads with him. Using the keywords of refuge, refuse and refusal, the project also invites the public to come interact with the artist and create altars for loved ones or bring simple offerings—objects, drawings, gestures. Set to coincide with the Christmas holiday season, Lê examines the history of Christianity (among other spiritual practices) in Thailand, including H Gallery’s history as a former orphanage and the untimely death of the orphan.

Lastly, within the space, Lê aims to stage the second installment of his LOVE BANG! (a “faux phở-real”) music video trilogy. heART/break! is a sexperimental art music video for an original multi-lingual “hip pop” song (Vietnamese, Thai, Khmer and English). Featuring time-traveling, star-crossed figures (orphans, refugees), the video interweaves the past and the present. The new song pays tongue-in-cheek homage to Thai and Vietnamese tunes as well as Western pop songs, which are ever-present on the streets of Southeast Asia.

These strings of associations (pun intended) are a metaphorical means to look at the layered, traumatized topographies of Southeast Asian identities. The artist explores the divides—and connections—between spirituality and sexuality, the physical and the metaphysical.

location

X
  • Born: Sài Gòn
  • Based:

comments

X

Pool

Greyson Hong

2010 Large scale floor to ceiling projection Duration: 6 min 14 sec (looped) Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Greyson Hong

b. 1982
image description
  • See All Works

Greyson Hong received her M.F.A. in film and video from Bard College (2014) and her B.F.A. in studio art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2007). She was born in Chicago, IL, and lives in New Haven, CT, where she teaches video at the Educational Center for the Arts and Gateway Community College. She also studied at the Summer Studio Program at Oxbow School of Art (2004), with a concentration in Glass and Sculpture, and the United States Naval Academy (2002), with a concentration in Chemistry and Mathematics. She is currently the Artist-in-Residence at Artspace New Haven.

Greyson Hong is a new media and performance artist whose work explores memory, loss, personal histories, narrative form, displacement, and the body. Her work pulls from personal experiences to contemplate the choreographies of space, trained bodies, and the way we use non-verbal language to communicate via sound, light, and gesture. Her recent work attempts to imagine impossible realities of the queer gendered body. In Costco Photo Repair, she hires Costco to digitally re-gender her childhood photographs. The center photo of each triptych presents the in-between stage, introducing a third space beyond the gender binary.

location

X
  • Born: Chicago, IL, USA
  • Based: New Haven, CT, USA

comments

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Pool (screen capture)

Greyson Hong

2010 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

X

Greyson Hong

b. 1982
image description
  • See All Works

Greyson Hong received her M.F.A. in film and video from Bard College (2014) and her B.F.A. in studio art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2007). She was born in Chicago, IL, and lives in New Haven, CT, where she teaches video at the Educational Center for the Arts and Gateway Community College. She also studied at the Summer Studio Program at Oxbow School of Art (2004), with a concentration in Glass and Sculpture, and the United States Naval Academy (2002), with a concentration in Chemistry and Mathematics. She is currently the Artist-in-Residence at Artspace New Haven.

Greyson Hong is a new media and performance artist whose work explores memory, loss, personal histories, narrative form, displacement, and the body. Her work pulls from personal experiences to contemplate the choreographies of space, trained bodies, and the way we use non-verbal language to communicate via sound, light, and gesture. Her recent work attempts to imagine impossible realities of the queer gendered body. In Costco Photo Repair, she hires Costco to digitally re-gender her childhood photographs. The center photo of each triptych presents the in-between stage, introducing a third space beyond the gender binary.

location

X
  • Born: Chicago, IL, USA
  • Based: New Haven, CT, USA

comments

X

Salpuri

Greyson Hong

2012 Single channel video Duration: 10 min 30 sec (silent looped) Courtesy of the artist

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Greyson Hong

b. 1982
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Greyson Hong received her M.F.A. in film and video from Bard College (2014) and her B.F.A. in studio art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2007). She was born in Chicago, IL, and lives in New Haven, CT, where she teaches video at the Educational Center for the Arts and Gateway Community College. She also studied at the Summer Studio Program at Oxbow School of Art (2004), with a concentration in Glass and Sculpture, and the United States Naval Academy (2002), with a concentration in Chemistry and Mathematics. She is currently the Artist-in-Residence at Artspace New Haven.

Greyson Hong is a new media and performance artist whose work explores memory, loss, personal histories, narrative form, displacement, and the body. Her work pulls from personal experiences to contemplate the choreographies of space, trained bodies, and the way we use non-verbal language to communicate via sound, light, and gesture. Her recent work attempts to imagine impossible realities of the queer gendered body. In Costco Photo Repair, she hires Costco to digitally re-gender her childhood photographs. The center photo of each triptych presents the in-between stage, introducing a third space beyond the gender binary.

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  • Born: Chicago, IL, USA
  • Based: New Haven, CT, USA

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Salpuri (screen capture)

Greyson Hong

2012 Screen capture of video performance Courtesy of the artist

contributor

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Greyson Hong

b. 1982
image description
  • See All Works

Greyson Hong received her M.F.A. in film and video from Bard College (2014) and her B.F.A. in studio art from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2007). She was born in Chicago, IL, and lives in New Haven, CT, where she teaches video at the Educational Center for the Arts and Gateway Community College. She also studied at the Summer Studio Program at Oxbow School of Art (2004), with a concentration in Glass and Sculpture, and the United States Naval Academy (2002), with a concentration in Chemistry and Mathematics. She is currently the Artist-in-Residence at Artspace New Haven.

Greyson Hong is a new media and performance artist whose work explores memory, loss, personal histories, narrative form, displacement, and the body. Her work pulls from personal experiences to contemplate the choreographies of space, trained bodies, and the way we use non-verbal language to communicate via sound, light, and gesture. Her recent work attempts to imagine impossible realities of the queer gendered body. In Costco Photo Repair, she hires Costco to digitally re-gender her childhood photographs. The center photo of each triptych presents the in-between stage, introducing a third space beyond the gender binary.

location

X
  • Born: Chicago, IL, USA
  • Based: New Haven, CT, USA

comments

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