Residency, Talk

A Mouthful of Cloud (working title): Jen Liu in conversation with Freya Chou

June 14, 2024 – June 14, 2024
7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Asia Art Archive in America

23 Cranberry St. Brooklyn, NY

What does it mean to live in the Cloud? On June 14th, AAAinA’s Spring 2024 Artist-in-Residence Jen Liu discussed her current body of work in progress, developed during her residency, A Mouthful of Cloud (working title). In this presentation Liu considered the different ways technology and mythology work to flatten human experience into simple physical mechanics: from the work of liquid evaporation of Hungry Ghosts to the invisible data microlabor that drives digital society. People become mist, then are reified as AI-driven diffusion-based images bearing little resemblance to their human origin. Curator and editor, Freya Chou joined the artist for a conversation afterwards.

AAAinA’s Artist-in-Residence program supports research, development, and/or execution of new creative work in response to Asia Art Archive in America’s digital and physical archive and collection. The nomination-based three-month residency  culminates in a public presentation in which the artist shares the findings and result of their research.

Participant Bios: 

Artist Portrait by Walter Wlodarczyk

Jen Liu is a New York-based visual artist working in video, painting, performance, and sculpture, on diasporic Asian identities, postcolonial economies, techno-biopolitics, and the re-motivating of archival artifacts. In her most recent work, she’s used genetic engineering and dark encryption to reframe firsthand accounts of electronics workers, and created semi-speculative scripts combining corporate brochures and industrial manuals with firsthand accounts of industrial workers and incarcerated labor activists in Asia.  Liu is a recipient of the Hewlett 50 Arts Commission, Creative Capital Grant, LACMA Art + Technology Lab, Guggenheim Fellowship in Film/Video, and the Cornell Tech \Art Award, among others. She has presented work at MoMA, The Whitney Museum, The New Museum, Sculpture Center, Kunsthaus Zurich, Kunsthalle Wien, MUSAC Leon, KW Berlin, multiple Berlinale exhibitions at AdK, Royal Academy and ICA in London, and was included in the 2015 Shanghai Biennial, 2019 Singapore Biennial, 2023 Future of Today Biennial (Beijing), and the 2023 Taipei Biennial. She has also received multiple grants and residencies, including Akademie Schloss Solitude, Stuttgart; Para Site, Hong Kong; Pioneer Works and LMCC in New York; and de ateliers, Amsterdam, NL.

Artist Portrait by Taipei Fine Art Museum

Freya Chou is a curator and editor. She is Co-Curator of Taipei Biennial 2023, together with Brian Kuan Wood and Reem Shadid. In 2022, she served as a member of the 58th Carnegie International’s Curatorial Council and Guest Curator of Hong Kong’s participation in the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia (2022).  She joined the curatorial team of the 6th and 7th Taipei Biennial (2008, 2010) and was Co-Curator of the 10th Shanghai Biennial (2014). From 2015 to 2019, she worked at Para Site in Hong Kong as the institution’s inaugural Curator of Education and Public Programmes. During those four years, she has curated exhibitions including Ellen Pau: What About Home Affairs?—A Retrospective (2018), Chris Evans, Pak Sheung Chuen: Two Exhibitions (2017), and Afterwork (co-curator, 2016). Chou has worked with several organisations on research projects, also edited and contributed writing to many artist books, magazines, and exhibition catalogues.  She is co-founder of Premium Economy, a cultural service office creates publications for the people and institutions shaping contemporary culture.  

AAAinA Artist-in-Residence program is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts. 

AAAinA’s general programming and operations are funded in part by the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in Partnership with the City Council, Ruth Foundation, and the Vilcek Foundation.