Jam: Cultural Congestions in Contemporary Asian Art
07 January 2009 to 05 April 2009
South Hill Park
Bracknell, South Eastwww.southhillpark.org.uk
link to Google map
Madi Acharya-Baskerville (detail of work)
Madi Acharya-Baskerville’s work explores the idea of ‘jam’ with reference to childhood memories and the experience of migration, as experienced being brought up in an ‘other’ culture. There is an analogy between discarded objects and the sense of dislocation that individuals may feel when they are exiled from their place of origin. The series of smaller works are about abandonment, the loss of function, the projection of new experiences onto an object that has become obsolete, thereby giving it an alternative meaning. In terms of exile, feelings of loss and uncertainty, associated with leaving behind one’s host culture, can find a home in such found objects.
As populations surge and international migration grows steadily, the movement of people, objects and identities are activities that have taken on a political and cultural character of their own. Whether the movement is across the city, across the country or across the world we are confronted by the product of such movement, which creates cultural congestions – Jam.
The exhibition explores the concept of jam and cultural congestion in visual art practices in work by emerging Asian artists, including Madi Acharya-Baskerville, Tsai-Wei Chen, I-Ting Hou, Su-Chen Hsu, Emma Kwan, Feng-Ru Lee, Wang Ruobing, Bindu Mehra & Himanshu Desai, Hua Kuan Sai, Sam Su, Pei-Shih Tu and Ming Turner. What happens when there is so much art, so many exhibitions and so many events? Does this overwhelm the viewer and do we develop sensory overload? Or does the congestion enable pausing and reflection of the richness and diversity across cultures?
Jam: Cultural Congestions allows a range of interpretations. It may be something tasty to spread on the bread of different cultures, something sweet and soothing referencing childhood memories, the home-made, the domestic and the everyday. This variety of ingredients may also produce the sour chutney of rootlessness and disillusionment, reflecting migration pain and homesickness. In the way that musicians can play together and improvise freely to create a new sound, using a range of media such as sound, collage, film, installation and sculpture, Jam: Cultural Congestions brings together artists from a range of cultures to explore and construct a visual jam, a think tank and space created by cultural congestion.
The exhibition is curated by Outi Remes, Yi-Fang Chen and Madi Acharya-Baskerville, and supported by the National Culture & Arts Foundation, Taiwan, the National Arts Council Singapore and Panasonic.
Tracey Jerome: www.a-n.co.uk/interface/reviews/single/517923
April Bateman: www.a-n.co.uk/interface/reviews/single/518135