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Archive for March, 2014

The Double_place des arts_49

The Double_place des arts_45

The Double_place des arts_1

The Double_place des arts_65

45 minutes at place-des-art, Montreal, Feb 7, 2014, Photo by Parham Yazdy

Performed by Laurence Eulalle, Stephanie Wu, Maggy Flynn, Veronique Morier, Mary Williamson, Brittney Gering, Bailey Eng, Ekaterina Kukharchuk, Lucy Fandel, Camille Brisson, Liliana Argumedo, Mira Fister-Tadic, Wing Sze Tsang-Hy, Alida Esmail, Natalie Montalvo.

Sixteen females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row and facing the same direction. They repeat four still gestures: standing, kneeing, sitting, and lying on the floor. The performers hold each gesture for five minutes and then move to another gesture.

The gestures in the performance are inspired by gargoyle, a legendary stone-carved grotesque with a spout that normally is designed to convey water from a roof. Mouth serves as the opening for food intake and in the articulation of sound and speech. However, when performers wear the mouthpieces, or when women’s mouth is forced to open, the mouth loses its function. In fact, it silences and disables the women because they are unable to talk when their mouths are widely pulled open. This performance explores another side of the unseen and unspoken—the vulnerability, struggle, shame, and suffering that we are uneasy to share and expose.

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The-Other-Words-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-04The-Other-Words-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-01The-Other-Words-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-06Chun Hua Catherine Dong feeds pre-masticated rice to a white male mannequin head for four hours at Nuit Blanche in Montreal in 2014The-Other-Words-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-05Chun Hua Catherine Dong feeds pre-masticated rice to a white male mannequin head for four hours at Nuit Blanche in Montreal in 2014

4 hours at  Nuit Blanche on March 1st, 2014, Montreal. And 3 hours  at Palais des congrès de Montréal on March 15th, 2014,  Montreal. photo by Parham Yazdy.

I set a desk and two chairs in an indoor space. I sit on a chair, and a mannequin in front of me. There is a plate of cooked rice on the desk, I use a spoon to scoop rice, put it into my month, and slowly chew it until it becomes soft and warm. And then I carefully transfer the rice from my month to the spoon, and feed the mannequin in front of me. This process is repeated until the rice on the plate is thoroughly transferred.

This performance issues communication and linguistically phenomena with minimalistic gestures. It refers that the sense of authenticity, integrity and beauty of resource language get lost in translation. The rice in this performance is a metaphor of text. I am sitting on a desk, translating a big plate of text to my reader who is devouring this plate in its translated form. My reader may understand the subject, but the quality of what he/she has consumed is definitely not the same as the original once. In fact, translating a text is like chewing up rice and then feeding it to somebody else. In performance, what I feed to people is still rice. However, this transformed rice has already lost its flavor and nutrition. It is the same in translation, clarity and fluency of source text might still be kept in a target text. However, the source text and the target text can never be the same because fidelity in translation is the root that translators strive to approach but it can never truly be reached.

The processing of eating and feeding rice to the others is a process of self-translation, a communicative situation, from one cultural context to the other.  My body in this performance is a cross-cultural mediator, rendering my experiences into the both languages. In this performance, I am not producing another original, but a reflection of difference that tailors reality and identify to suit conscious ideological needs.  What I offer is not unbiased textual fidelity, but a taste of the otherness in cultural communication.

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Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Festival de théâtre de rue de Lachine in Montreal: Twelve females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, they stand in a row and repeated three still gestures.The-Double-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-02Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Festival de théâtre de rue de Lachine in Montreal: Twelve females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, they stand in a row and repeated three still gestures.Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Festival de théâtre de rue de Lachine in Montreal: Twelve females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, they stand in a row and repeated three still gestures.Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Festival de théâtre de rue de Lachine in Montreal: Twelve females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, they stand in a row and repeated three still gestures.

2 hours at Festival de théâtre de rue de Lachine, August 16th-17th, 2013, photo by Dayna Danger.

performed by Wing Sze Tsang-Hy ,Lili Monette-Crépô ,Bailey Eng ,Ekaterina Kukharchuk ,Alexandra Côté,Olivia. Faye Lathuilliere, Claire Métayer ,Simone Pitot , WhiteFeather Christie Hunter , Erin Gee, Brittney Gering, Zed Bee, Marie-Chantale Desrosiers, Dayna Danger, Beth Frey, Elise Timm-Bottos

Twelve females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row and facing the same direction. They repeat three still gestures: standing, kneeing, and lying on the floor. The performers hold each gesture for five minutes and then move to another gesture.

The gestures in the performance are inspired by gargoyle, a legendary stone-carved grotesque with a spout that normally is designed to convey water from a roof. Mouth serves as the opening for food intake and in the articulation of sound and speech. However, when performers wear the mouthpieces, or when women’s mouth is forced to open, the mouth loses its function. In fact, it silences and disables the women because they are unable to talk when their mouths are widely pulled open. This performance explores another side of the unseen and unspoken—the vulnerability, struggle, shame, and suffering that we are uneasy to share and expose.

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Hourglass at zeitraumexit e.V.

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 24 hours at INTERNATIONALES FESTIVAL FÜR PERFORMANCE, zeitraumexit e.V., Mannheim, Germany

I set two 14 inch bowls, two pairs of small brushes, and tweezers on a table. I begin painting white rice with black ink one by one until the amount of black rice equals the amount of white rice. The audiences are invited to sit down in front of me, and we work together.

“Hourglass” is a rice-based performance that examines “deterritorialization” and “disessentialization” in the Taken-for-Granted world through exploring oppositions as manifestations of fundamental existential concern in Chinese philosophy. The action of constantly painting white rice to black is a metaphor of hourglass. Sand in hourglass cannot flow without rotation as if power cannot shift without struggle. Too much power is concentrated on one side seems to be a main factor causing disharmony, confusion and dislocation, which embody on the social turbulence that we see and feel in our daily lives. In fact, power doesn’t bring growth unless we understand the essence of sharing the power.

The gesture of painting white rice to black is a political gesture, a democratic process of negotiations between citizens and established power. It reveals my desire not only to negotiate and transform everyday political life to art, but also to install a model for social transformation that possibly could create a new way to look at utopia and future. For me, political gesture doesn’t have to be radical, and process of social transformation does not have to involve violence.  In fact, it could be done through meditative way or even meditation because meditation itself is intervention: a method of protest, a strategy of negotiation and a way of speak-out. This performance is more relevant to open conversation about how to transform social and political landscapes, examining relationships between the citizens and the place they live, between what they have lost and what they have gained in the rapid changing city. This rice performance provides an opportunity for participants/ citizens to meditate their situations while working together on a mutual goal: reconfigure the established centralized power system in order to create an equal, fair and balanced world.

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The Double at Kaunas Biennale

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Kaunas Biennial: nineteen girls wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row, repeating three still gestures: standing, kneeing, and lying on the floor.Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Kaunas Biennial: nineteen girls wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row, repeating three still gestures: standing, kneeing, and lying on the floor.The-Double-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-04The-Double-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-01Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance at Kaunas Biennial: nineteen girls wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row, repeating  three still gestures: standing, kneeing, and lying on the floor.The-Double-Chun-Hua-Catherine-Dong-06

3 hours at, UNITEXT, The 9th Kaunas Biennial, The M. Žilinskas art gallery of National Museum of M. K. Čiurlionis, Kaunas, Lithuania

Nineteen females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row and facing the same direction. They repeat three still gestures: standing, kneeing, sitting, and lying on the floor. The performers hold each gesture for five minutes and then move to another gesture.

The gestures in the performance are inspired by gargoyle, a legendary stone-carved grotesque with a spout that normally is designed to convey water from a roof. Mouth serves as the opening for food intake and in the articulation of sound and speech. However, when performers wear the mouthpieces, or when women’s mouth is forced to open, the mouth loses its function. In fact, it silences and disables the women because they are unable to talk when their mouths are widely pulled open. This performance explores another side of the unseen and unspoken—the vulnerability, struggle, shame, and suffering that we are uneasy to share and expose.

performed by performed by Gabriele Pencylaite, Renate Voveryte, Monika Apcinikovaite, Solveiqc xcsileqsleante, Birute Paplauskaite, Mile Silinsliyte, Allsra Kunnapas, Laisvuiye Sidlauskyte, Neringa Krirsciunaite, Indre Matelionyte, Jostina Kiursinaite, Giedre Milkintaite, Egle Danbulauite, Indre Webonaviciute, Alina Puzaite, Raduile Navikaite, Karolina Ginte Salenaite, Mingaile Perioraite, and so on

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To Rebel is Justified

Chun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. She stands in a chair and hold a board to confess.Chun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. she salutes with her left hand in a pig houseChun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. she is tied up in a classroomChun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. she is tied on a pole like a dogChun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. She is spanked and punishedChun Hua Catherine Dong performs the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution. she is disciplined by kneeing on a red washboard ” To Rebel is Justified” consists 12 pieces of 40” x50” photographs that explore vulnerability in ritualistic humiliation in performance through reconfiguring historical iconic image of the Red Guard in the Chinese Cultural Revolution.  This work aims to add a voice in re-examination of history within a performance art context in order to obtain altered states of consciousness that possibly opens more discussions, most importantly, to seek justification and justice.

photo credit: Qu Chang

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2 hours at  Labyrinth, Contemporary Art Festival, Nuit Blanche, Art Souterrain, Place Bonaventure, Montreal, March 2, 2013. photo by Eric Tschaeppeler. 

performed by danielle doiron, Zoe Roux, Laura-Claire Maher, Alida Esmail, Paula Duffy, Alexandra Côté, Janaki Banting, natalie montalvo, Kim L. Rouchdy, wing sze tsang-hy, Madeleine Black, Feliz Tupe, Liliana Argumedo, Lucy Fandel, Mira Fister-Tadic, and Sammie Rust. 

Sixteen females wear red mouthpieces and white bath towels, standing in a row and facing the same direction. They repeat three still gestures: standing, kneeing, and lying on the floor. The performers hold each gesture for five minutes and then move to another gesture.

The gestures in the performance are inspired by gargoyle, a legendary stone-carved grotesque with a spout that normally is designed to convey water from a roof. Mouth serves as the opening for food intake and in the articulation of sound and speech. However, when performers wear the mouthpieces, or when women’s mouth is forced to open, the mouth loses its function. In fact, it silences and disables the women because they are unable to talk when their mouths are widely pulled open. This performance explores another side of the unseen and unspoken—the vulnerability, struggle, shame, and suffering that we are uneasy to share and expose.

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