Still Lives & Studies

Ho Tam

May 19 - May 29, 2004

This installation is a co-presentation with the Inside Out Toronto Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival (May 20-30), 2004. Special thanks to Mercer Union. Here are some words from Ho Tam:

"I am planning to premiere two video works that revolve around the theme of sketches and portraitures. Continuation my investigation into the issues of race and gender, these two video installations look further into the construction of identity and interrogate the problems of representation, complicated by myths and stereotypes. Rather than didactic and monolithic, Still Lives and Studies open up possibilities for alternative readings while celebrating the diversity in the imaging and imagination of queer Asian men."

Still Lives, 2003

"By bringing portraiture in painting and video together, Still Lives creates a visual experience that connects the art making process with the artist and his models. Loosely tied together by a baroque opening and finale, the video recalls some of the prominent queer aesthetics such as kitsch, camp and improv in the low art cinema of Kenneth Anger, Jack Smith and George Kuchar. While paying tributes to these avant-garde filmmakers, Still Lives maintains its focus on the portrayal of ten Asian men -- their struggle in the everyday life that imitates art and vice versa."

Studies, 2004

"In conjunction with the photography exhibit Posing concurrently on display in the main gallery space, I will also be showing a loop tape on "posing" in public space. Studies is a compilation of video portraits produced at the monthly dance event AsianXpress at the club 5ive in Toronto. The video examines club culture in the margins and highlights a younger generation in their representation of their "selves" in front of the camcorder.