ABOUT THE WORK
Material: Digital 4K video,2K fabric projection screen,Metal screen stand
Installation conceptAfter discovering the body of Maiy C. Hồ (1995-2021) at UdK in Berlin (UdK-Universität der Künste Berlin) following her... Read More
After discovering the body of Maiy C. Hồ (1995-2021) at UdK in Berlin (UdK-Universität der Künste Berlin) following her suicide on June 24th, 2021, Chongyan was compelled to take a step back and dedicate herself to documenting Maiy's struggles with depression through this video installation.
Maiy was a German/Vietnamese trans-woman brought up in an abusive household. She was a victim of domestic violence from an early age - both physical and psychological - predominantly at the hands of her stepfather, who insisted that she not directly reference or allude to her native Vietnamese culture whilst around their home; it was through this cruel demand that a part of her identity was ripped away. Subsequently, after being taken into care by child protective services, she began exchanging letters with Florian - Maiy's half-brother. We draw upon his recollections and her accounts of suffering from clinical depression or, more precisely, her gender dysphoria - a psychological condition known to cause immense discomfort and anxiety connected to the misassignment of gender at birth.
Although many questions will remain unanswered, this immersive installation seeks to share the irrevocable pain that Maiy experienced.
Acting as the preface for a series of moving images dedicated to Maiy, this short is only the beginning of a three-year plan. The following two chapters are supported by Le Fresnoy - Studio national des arts contemporains. The research binding each chapter together concentrates on how communication softens the impact of a subject when discussed through dialogue; in a similar sense, the experiential aspect of the victim’s account can never truly be replicated through film or any other art form. Moving images can provide a significant stopgap through which we sublimate the darker sides of the human psyche.
The video moves us through the varied milieu of quotidian life. We wander through
several locations; journeys all too familiar to a city dweller – in our case, a native Berliner.
An invisible non-entity crosses from one liminal environment to the next, often with the spatialisation echoing Maiy’s perpetual unease - a post-mortem voyage through places she once inhabited.
Narration accompanies us – compiled from a series of letter exchanges written over six years by Maiy and her half-brother. The voice that recollects Maiy's fragmented internalised musings is an androgynous one, based upon Chongyan’s memory of her voice.
The translucent black tissues dampen the light flooding in from the outside and are, in fact, an extension of the spatialisation in the video.
Large stones rest on the floor, with the purpose being to counterbalance the book on the other end of a piece of nylon string—conceived as a metaphor for the chosen method of suicide.
A stylised funeral, of sorts, for an artist unable to attend the ceremony in reality.
Intended as the first of three chapters dedicated to Maiy, this installation is only the beginning of a more extensive series. Supported by Le Fresnoy - Studio national des arts contemporains, the following chapter is a short docufiction, with the third and final chapter taking the form of an installation.
Binding each chapter together is research concentrating on how the interpersonal exchange between two subjects softens the impact of a traumatic experience through the mere factor of it becoming verbalised. The experiential component of a victim's account never is truly replicated through the moving image. Nevertheless, moving images can produce a significant stopgap through which we can sublimate a tragedy—one which, in this case, was too much to bear.
Pre-authorization of 20% of the price (max 300 €) to guarantee the intention to purchase. The amount will not be charged.
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