Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Rearranging Desires- Curating the "Other” Within

October 6-31, 2008

fofa Gallery, Concordia University
1455 Boul, De Maisonneuve West
Montréal, Québec

Guest Curator; Alice Ming Wai Jim
Artists: Ayesha Hameed, Karen Tam, Chih-Chien Wang and Mary Sui Yee Wong

Opening : October 17, 6-8pm Fashion show of artist Mary Sui Yee Wong's Yellow Apparel, modeled and performed by Choeur Maha will take place during the opening

Symposium: Rearranging Desires: About Culturally-Specific Work
Date: October 18, 2008, 9:45am-6:00pmKeynote: Jamelie Hassan, award-winning visual artist and curator based in London, OntarioLocation: York Auditorium, EV-1.605, Concordia University, 1515 Ste-Catherine St., W.Bringing together over twenty scholars, educators, activists, writers and artists from different disciplines, the one-day symposium seeks to address the broad range of concerns about culturally-specific work in North America and the specific issues affecting the context of this particular project being presented in Québec.The program opens with the 2008 Beckett-Baxter Memorial Lecture by award-winning visual artist and independent curator, Jamelie Hassan, as the keynote address for the symposium. This will be followed by panel discussions on questioning cultural authenticity and difference in the classroom, and an artist roundtable.

For symposium program, please click here

Rearranging Desires is presented concurrently with the exhibition in the FOFA Gallery vitrine, Crossing Cultures: Images of Norman Bethune in China, curated by Dr. Catherine Mackenzie, and the symposium Norman Bethune and Visual Culture(s), as part of the City of Montreal’s Hommage à Norman Bethune.

For more information, please email Alice Ming Wai Jim,

the website for this exhibition is currently under construction

Symposium: Norman Bethune and Visual Culture(s)

Saturday, October 18, 2008, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.1515 Ste Catherine Street W., EV 1-615 (Metro Guy-Concordia)

Special Musical Event: SPEAK OUT!Performances by: the punk band Tu Three (23) and hip hop artist Without WillDate: October 26, 8pm, United Nations Day WeekendLocation: Le Caigibi, 5490 boul. St-Laurent

Mary Sui Yee Wong has give fibreQUARTERLY this material on her work Yellow Apparel and Mei Ren美人 to post in advance of opening

In our present situation where cultural borders are constantly shifting with the increase of nomadic movement resulting from an economic aggression towards globalization, there are those who feel unsettled by the cross-cultural and socio-political hybridization that is remapping national and individual identities.

Within this climate of flux, there is a resurgence of a kind of fashionable Orientalism that concerns me. Take for example the recent trends towards the use of Asian calligraphy and symbols in clothing, the popularization of Feng Shui in architecture, Hollywood’s attempt to cash in on Kung Fu movies, and the flooding of contemporary Asian art in the international art market. This concern has brought me to revisit my passion for fabrics and surface designs as it relates to representation and cultural consumption.

Yellow Apparel employs the convenient vehicles of fashion and fashion photography combined with the look of the 60’s to re-appropriate the appropriated and play with notions of acculturation as part of the everyday. Taking form as a performance-installation, a unique line of clothing will be displayed in the gallery street-level vitrine and modeled during a fashion extravaganza at the exhibition opening.
Mei Ren美人 美 mei (beautiful) 人 ren (person) is an interactive sculpture that capitalizes on a seemingly harmless product like paper doll cut-outs as a variant to my explorations into fashion as a powerful canon that determines the status quo. A life size cutout of myself will be displayed along side a wardrobe of various Western and Asian period clothing pieces. In keeping with notions of prête a porté and the playful aspect of cut-out kits, viewers will be invited to interact with the work by dressing the doll with any range of outfits.

Both works seek to create a space: material, social, cultural, and political, that allows me to explore how post-colonial Orientalism is marketed, disseminated and consumed.

Mary Sui Yee Wong 2008

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