The Kitchen OnScreen: Jen Liu, Ilana Harris-Babou

September 27, 2021 – November 25, 2021
The Kitchen

512 West 19th St.
New York, NY

The Kitchen OnScreen: Jen Liu, Ilana Harris-Babou
Image courtesy of the event organizer.

Image courtesy of the event organizer.

The Video Viewing Room series makes recent video works and archival recordings available online. This initiative revives The Kitchen’s longstanding Video Viewing Room—a dedicated space within our buildings from 1975 through the early 1990s. Functioning at first as a resource facility where visitors could watch their own tapes or view videos from The Kitchen’s archive and collection, in fall 1978 the Video Viewing Room began to feature curated programs of artists’ videos.

In fall 2021, the Video Viewing Room continues online as a monthly series with presentations by Jen Liu in September, Ilana Harris-Babou in October, and additional artists to be announced for future months.

Jen Liu >< Fred Ho ///  Electropore >< Warrior Sisters 
Available to view beginning the week of September 27, 2021

Artist Jen Liu premieres a new video short, Electropore, as part of her ongoing project Pink Slime Caesar Shift (2017–present). Through this new piece, Liu responds to the work of composer, baritone saxophonist, and activist Fred Ho (1957– 2014), whose foundational concepts—political revolution through artistic form, Black and Asian American coalition building, matriarchal socialism, and capitalism as biotoxicity—continue to resonate today. Liu will present Electropore in tandem with archival materials related to the sci-fi opera from which it draws inspiration: Warrior Sisters: The New Adventures of African and Asian Womyn Warriors, by Ho and librettist Ann T. Greene, staged at The Kitchen in 2000. The Video Viewing Room will also feature working materials that draw out Liu’s conceptual affinities with Ho and her reframing of the original opera within an anonymous and electrified/digitized paradigm, as the extension of her own explorations of contemporary labor activism, grassroots genetic engineering, and femme filiation. Organized by Alison Burstein, Curator, Media and Engagement.

Ilana Harris-Babou
Available to view beginning the week of October 25, 2021

Artist Ilana Harris-Babou presents recent video work, along with related materials such as text, images, and research references. In the artist’s words, her work “speaks the aspirational language of consumer culture, using humor as a means to digest painful realities. Her work confronts the contradictions of the American Dream: the ever unreliable notion that hard work will lead to upward mobility and economic freedom.” Organized by Alison Burstein, Curator, Media and Engagement.

Artist Bios 

Jen Liu is a visual artist working in video, painting, biomaterial, sculpture, and performance, on topics of national identity, labor economy, and the reinterpretation of archival artifacts. Liu has presented work at The Whitney Museum, The New Museum, and MoMA in New York; Royal Academy and ICA in London; Kunsthaus Zurich; Kunsthalle Düsseldorf; KW Berlin; Kunsthalle Wien; Guangzhou Times Museum; UCCA Beijing; Aspen Museum of Art; Henry Art Gallery, Seattle; the 2014 Shanghai Biennale; the 2015, 2016, and 2018 Berlinale Forum Expanded; and the 2019 Singapore Biennial, among others. She has received the Guggenheim Fellowship in Film/Video, the NYFA/NYSCA Fellowship in Digital/Electronic Media, LACMA Art + Tech Fellowship, the Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant; and Creative Capital. She is also on the film/video faculty at Bennington College.

Ilana Harris-Babou’s work is interdisciplinary, spanning sculpture and installation, and grounded in video. She has exhibited throughout the U.S. and Europe, with solo exhibitions at The Museum of Arts & Design, Larrie, 80 WSE, and HESSE FLATOW in New York. Other venues include The Whitney Museum of Art, The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Queens Museum, SculptureCenter, Kunsthal Charlottenborg (Denmark), Kunsthaus Hamburg (Germany), La Casa Encendida (Spain), and West Space (Melbourne), among others. She holds an MFA in Visual Art from Columbia University and a BA in Art from Yale University.