Through blurred glimpses, a performer is seen moving alone through a dance studio. Limbs appear and disappear in the video frame, and for a moment, a body is reflected on a mirrored wall. There is the sound of breathing, and fragments of a soundtrack can be heard when the performer nears each corner of the room. The mediated relationship between spectator and performer is complicated and rethought in Xavier Cha’s most recent work, Untitled (Caretaker), a live-stream video performance shot remotely through a Go-Pro harnessed to a dancer’s chest. Originally conceived in 2020 during the height of pandemic isolation, the work questions how we witness bodies struggling through times of crisis and collapse. Agency of the performing body is restored and emphasized in two ways: improvised movement (instead of mapping movement onto the body through choreography); and limiting any peripheral access a viewer might have to seeing the “full picture,” so to speak. But where distance is normally felt through a video interface, Cha insists on proximity and intimacy between viewer and performer by way of inhabiting a disorienting firstperson perspective. Untitled (Caretaker) will be broadcast in real time at 47 Canal at select hours on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays through the length of the exhibition. The broadcast will also run simultaneously at the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University as part of their group exhibition, The Movement-Image. This work is made in collaboration with performer Ley (maybe Lysis), with sound design by Ashland Mines.
Xavier Cha lives and works in New York. Recent solo exhibitions include: Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles (2019); Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, Cleveland, Ohio (2016); 47 Canal, New York (2015); the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2011); and the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (2010). Their work has been exhibited at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2012); The Kitchen, New York (2010); Sculpture Center, New York (2007 and 2006); Asia Society Museum, New York (2006); and Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2009) among other galleries and institutions. In 2013 they also participated in the 12th Biennale de Lyon.
Ley (maybe Lysis) is a trans-disciplinary, multi-directional Cross-dresser.
Ashland Mines is a Miami based multidisciplinary artist and musician. Focused on collaboration throughout his career Mines has worked with fellow artists Wu Tsang, Isa Genzken, Jason Moran, Ryan Trecartin, Xavier Cha and many more. In 2012 he curated the performance series “Blasting Voice,” at Suzanne Geiss. He was the creative director of Anthem for the 9th Berlin Biennale, and performed at the inaugural Ghost2561, a performance and video art series in Bangkok. Mines has had work presented at Martin-Gropius-Bau, MoMA, The Walker, Tate Modern, MOCA Los Angeles, The Shed, Park Avenue Armory and more.
Performance schedule for October 19–November 11, 2023:
Thursdays at 5 PM
Fridays at 4 PM, 5 PM
Saturdays at 2 PM, 3 PM, 4 PM