HOW International Curatorial Residency
Between 25 December 2018 and 15 January 2019 Kasia Sobucka undertook a curatorial residency at Shanghai’s HOW Art Museum on behalf of Arts Territory. The aim of the residency was to pursue curatorial research and project development through a programme of familiarization with the Chinese live art scene, particular focus being on innovative forms of participatory projects, experiential art, immersive installation and the use of technology in performance art. Within this framework were explored ideas surrounding ritual, catharsis, magic and myth, as context for the specific question of whether we feel an increasing need for traditional rituals and practices in our profoundly mediated ‘post-contemporary’ world.
Efforts were made during these three weeks to develop our knowledge of China’s contemporary art scene and to better understand the impact on local art communities of art organizations such as HOW Art Museum by meeting with local artists, curators and art organizations themselves. Our partnership is aimed at fostering collaboration between Chinese, Polish and UK-based artists, with the granting of new commissions as well as presentation of research results. This phase of the project, work on whose final structure formed part of the residency, will take the form of a series of live events planned for Shanghai and the UK in 2019.
As a part of the residency, Kasia delivered a lecture entitled The Illusion of Return: Diaspora Artists and Fluid Identity. The lecture focuses on The Illusion of Return, her recent commission-based project, supported by a joint scholarship from the Polish Ministry of Culture & National Heritage, and Arts Council England. From the perspective of diaspora artists, the project examines issues arising from the notions of identity, home and belonging. The subject of The Illusion of Return resonates with the core concept of the recent HOW Art Museum exhibition Heteroglossia. The project encourages artists and audiences to reflect on their personal stories of migration and to reconsider the idea of home – one that for most exiles is fraught with a great many emotions, dreams and indeed illusions.
Supported by the Polish Cultural Institute in Beijing