Xie Rong: Sea
Saturday 19.10. between 13-16
Wäinö Aaltonen Museum of Art, Itäinen Rantakatu 38
As part of Wäinö Aaltonen Museum’s When Is Now -exhibition
Conditions of the performance:
White outfit, white paper boats decorating the chest.
Face painted with Chinese character “海” – which means the Sea.
Sea water from Baltic Sea, carbon black pigment.
Pouring water over myself, the body gradually transforms into blue then later into black.
Xie Rong appropriates stereotypes of ‘Chineseness’, and tropes of Chinoiserie and femininity in order to subvert them. Utilising her own body as material, she often works with text written on her skin using red lipstick, black Chinese ink, white ‘ink’ made from jasmine tea, or her own breast milk. She mines her own experiences of childhood, family, marriage and motherhood – and those of her female ancestors – to play with her complex hybrid identity.
Her work explores the territory of translation: between two languages, between gesture and stillness, between her Chinese past and English present, between performance and image. Xie Rong studied at the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute High School before moving to London, where she gained a BA in Graphic Design at Central Saint Martins and an MA in Fine Art at the Royal College of Art. Her work has been seen in the United States, United Kingdom, France, China, Sweden, Egypt, Germany, Australia and Korea.