It is a 15-minute performance/presentation that utilizes a live-feed video. In this performance/presentation, I discuss the unspeakable and inaudible languages within Korean and English due to social constructions. I employ art as a language that allows me to be “I” the subject, to talk about self, my body, and its experience.
The light on my rice cooker turns green: it means the rice is fully cooked. I open my rice cooker and put some rice in a bowl.
I face a camera, which is connected to a projector throwing a projection next to me. In the projection, only my mouth and hand holding the rice bowl, and chopsticks show.
As I put rice in my mouth, I start to talk about my relationship to Korean language in English. For example, (…)“I was not able to speak about my body and its experience when I lived in the ’80s and ’90s Korean society.”(… )“I haven’t learned any languages to talk about my experiences of rape, depression, and my sexual desire as a girl, as a woman.”
Then I continue, ”So, I lived my life with my mouth shut. So, I lived ma li with mai mouut shu. So, I lib…” As I keep putting the rice in my mouth without swallowing it, my mouth becomes full of rice, and my speech gradually becomes incomprehensible and fades.
I spit out chewed rice back into the bowl. My mouth has now some room for air. I start to eat the chewed rice. I talk about my inaudible, therefore unspeakable, experiences as a foreigner, as an Asian woman, or simply as one with no voice in America, where I currently reside. But this time I speak in Korean. I consume all my chewed rice in the bowl.
The Unfolding, Mirage Gallery at Thompson Library 165
Performance / presentation
Documented by Lillianna Marie
A Standard Woman is a 45-second, one-to-one performance happening in public. During the project, people are invited to perform with me; a participant and I make straight eye contact for 45 seconds, holding each other’s hands.
“Are we even now?” I keep checking at the mirror, stepping on bricks, bending my knees, or sometimes tiptoeing for forty five seconds to make our height even and straight eye contact. At the end of the performance, I take a picture of our performing bodies, and each picture is sent to the participant to provide her or him a memory of how a standard woman was fabricated beyond the event of encountering a stranger.
Special thanks to all the participants:
Karen A. Hannon, Michael Richison, Mario Ashkar, TaeKyung Seo, Cosima Storz, Taylor W Couch, Sara Savage,Jess Turner, Laura Stokes, Evan Carson, Patrick Miller Gamble, Cortney Tunstall, Shannon Knapp, Christiana T.M. Harkulich, Moriah Ella Mason, Connor Hestdalen, Ryan M. Mckelvey, Elizabeth A Teer, Rebecca Bryant, Valerie Sipe, Jess Horn, Kelsey Peterson, Anna Nelson, Carmel Majidi, and other willfully anonymous participants
Kelly A. McNicholas, Jack Shifman, Donald Newman, Justin Shum, Joe Jackson, Josh Ferdelman, Amanda Hall, Lisa Skeen, Katie Skeen, Tammy Chadwick, Datam. C. Sarki, Jacqueline Miller, Rena LaMarr, Alphonso Laudat, Linda Huang, Rodrigo Arruda, Shelby Aliff, Jessie Justice, Ron Posner, Hyunju Kim, Leah J. Hill, J. E. Killian, Helen Jones, Stephanie Havener, and Kate Pleuss.
Lucinda Mickley, Naami F. Haile, Ada Obinna Ijomah, Federico Cuatlacuatl, Jillian Odoguardi, Matthew Francis, Adriana Matusiewicz, James Bichl Jr., Andy Meyer, Forrest Roberts, Sarah E. Meixner, Kim Roush, Catelyn Mailloux, Stephen White, Samantha Vasquez, Brian Coffey, Stephen James, and Brian McDorkle
Mote078 Gallery, Oval, and Bunker Projects
Interactive performance and communication project: mirror, camera, backdrop stand, sheer fabric, bricks, timer, artist’s body, participant’s body, photo release form.
This performance was made to fight back against the male gaze and voyeurism* while I expressed and claimed my sexuality as my own.
I start performing by changing my clothing. Noticing a camera (a voyeuristic gaze), I approach it and touch and lick the lens.
Except for the first 2 minutes, what the audience views through the screen on their own devices is my tongue which blocks the camera lens and creates a black screen, the view of the inside of my mouth. Certainly, the live video shows only the darkness while I masturbate.
Through this 4-hour-long performance, I reject being stuck in someone else’s sexualized image that replaces my sexuality by consuming as well as blocking the camera lens and shifting my position from an object being watched to an autonomous being.
*Quite often spying cameras were found in public women’s restrooms or motel rooms in S. Korea. It has been an issue for a long time, but the Korean patriarchal society had failed to recognize it as a serious crime to act on until 2016.
4 hour performance via live-streaming video
24′ 46″ documentation video excerpt
Olympia is a one-to-one participatory performative project. In the room, there is a bed set with white bed sheet and pillows. Red curtains are installed behind it. Across the table, a digital camera along with photo printer is set up. Before stepping into the room, the participants hear a voice from behind a curtain: “Would you like to be my model?” When the participants agree, I, wearing no clothing but high heels and a black strip necklace, welcome them. I introduce myself as a photographer and show the participants the picture of ‘Olympia’ painted by Manet. I ask the participants to pose just like Olympia, helping the participants to pose correctly; participants leans on the pillows, cross their legs, and place their hands on her/his genitalia. Then I take pictures of the participants when they are ready.
While the pictures are being printed, I provide the participants photo and video release forms. Also, the forms ask the participants to agree not to share what they experience in the room for 24 hours after participation. After they sign in the form, I give the participants the copy of the forms, the printed photos, and dollars in envelopes, saying “Thank you.”
This piece is concerned with an authorship of a body that is violated by cultural images, more particularly, by inherent ways to observe, exhibit, and market different gender, culture, race, and class. The familiar pose of a woman leaning on a bed, and established cultures of art, market, and bureaucracy are encountered in various ways while artist and participants interact. The notions of art and pornography, labor and money, diversity and class, sexuality and violence, and self-expression and exposure become indistinguishable but present when a random participant chooses to be and / or is convinced to be a body on display.
Bed sets, photo release form, cameras, photo printer, dollars, and artist and participant’s body.