Passaggio, 2021
Curated by Li Jia, installation view at Jimei x Arles Festival, Xiamen

Passaggio, 2021
Installation view at Pararailing, Shanghai

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Can images be more powerful than words?
How can I describe my feelings if I don’t have the vocabularies?

In the Wild Swans by Hans Christian Andersen, the princess need to remain silence and knit stinging nettles from the graveyards into shirts to save her eleven brothers casted by witchcraft. There is beauty associated with the quiet and lack of agency which essentially makes the prince fall in love with the princess. To what extend can accent be sexy, otherness be exotic, captionless photographs be informing, personal narratives be inclusive? There is an expansiveness to language: it both reaches for but never, really, arrives. It is arms out; stretched. It is sitting with hands facing upward on knees. It is true everybody has a body but that body is never universal. My doctor did not tell me this but later I discovered this on my own, that the Varicella zoster virus in my body will live with me for the rest of my life.

Passaggio is a term used in classical music to describe the transition in between chest voice and head voice. Only through extensive training and practice can someone project resonant sound during this transition area. This installation invites the viewer to interact with the photographs in the manner of reading rather than looking. Body Sing is a dual projection that revolves around the concept of binocular rivalry and episodic memory. Endel Tulving made the distinction between knowing and remembering, that knowing is factual recollection (semantic) whereas remembering is a feeling that is located in the past (episodic). In the projection, texts and moving images are showing simultaneously as stimuli that aim to evoke feelings that challenge each other and often suppressed by guilt and self-conscious.

This exhibition is the first chapter of an on-going project that examines voices and transit(lat)ions which will be further unpacked in the form of film and performance.