Asia Art Archive in America presented a public program on queer curatorial practices by artists of the Asian diaspora in and between Delhi, Hong Kong, Singapore, New York and London. Featuring exhibitions, initiatives and practices since the 1980s by lesbian and gay artists, this panel brought together Sunil Gupta, Ellen Pau and Jason Wee in conversation, moderated by Jeannine Tang. The panelists examined convergences and divergences between queer identities, practices, spatial production, form and politics, with implications for the writing of contemporary art and exhibition histories.
Sunil Gupta is a British/Canadian citizen, (b. New Delhi 1953) MA (RCA) PhD (Westminster) who lives in London and has been involved with independent photography as a critical practice for many years focusing on race, migration and queer issues. A retrospective was shown at The Photographers’ Gallery, London (2020/21) and has moved to The Image Center, Toronto. He is a Professorial Fellow at UCA, Farnham. His latest book is “We Were Here: Sexuality, Photography, and Cultural Difference, Selected Writings by Sunil Gupta”, Aperture New York 2022. His work is in many private and public collections including; the Tokyo Museum of Photography, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Royal Ontario Museum, Tate, Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art. His work is represented by Hales Gallery (New York, London), Materià Gallery (Rome), Stephen Bulger Gallery (Toronto) and Vadehra Art Gallery (New Delhi).
Ellen Pau was trained in radiography and worked in a public hospital. She made art in between shifts and free time. Her video works were exhibited in canto-pop concerts and at major art festivals. She and her friends started the artist collective Videotage in 1986 and Microwave, an annual media art festival in Hong Kong in 1996. In 2001. She represented Hong Kong to participate in the Venice Biennial. Her speculative autobiographical works are often the outcome of her study on image science, and Hong Kong culture. Ellen is a lesbian and living with her partner in Hong Kong.
Jason Wee is an artist and writer. Recent projects use a choral libretto as an invitation to consider the design of a general assembly (for the 2019 Singapore Biennale), and the choreographies of secrecy in public spaces, shipping lanes and publishing presses (for the 1st Asia Society Triennale, and the 2022 Kochi-Muziris Biennale). His art practice searches for polyphony and powerlessness in the figurations of Asia and Southeast Asia. His works move restlessly between art, design histories, poetry, publishing, geopolitics, sculpture and photography. He founded and runs Grey Projects, an artists’ library and residency. He is the author of three poetry collections, including the Gaudy Boy Poetry Prize finalist In Short, Future Now (Sternberg Press, 2020).
Jeannine Tang is an art historian teaching at The New School’s Eugene Lang College, as Assistant Professor of Modern and Contemporary Art.