The Lost Twelve Years (IV)

Performance: 25 minutes at Rapid Pause International Performance Art Festival in Chicago, 2015

 

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she pinches her forehead until there is red dot appears

hun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she uses a spoon to scratch her neck until there is red line appears

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she draws pink circles on her belly

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she throws gold paper to audience

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she pours ink on her back from a tea pot

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she pours ink on her back from a tea pot

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she shoots herself with ink

Chun Hua Catherine Dong's performance in Chicago: she left and her performance still remained in the gallery

step 1. pinch my forehead until there is red dot appears
step 2. use a spoon to scratch my neck until there is red line appears
step 3. draw pink circles on my belly
step 4. throw gold paper to audience
step 5. pour ink on my back from a tea pot
step 6. shoot myself with ink

After living aboard as a Chinese for 12 years, I noticed there is a tremendous change inside me: something that has nurtured and cultivated me has gradually faded and forgotten. The gesture of shooting myself with ink is a political gesture. It is not only an apology for my twelve-year absence but also a manifestation that reveals my urgent needs to renew my lost tradition and culture. The ink is an essential material for Chinese traditional painting and calligraphy. In my performance, the ink is not to be used as an artistic tool, but to be used as a weapon against myself. This performance examines relationships between where I live, what I have lost, and what  I have gained as a Chinese living aboard.  This performance is also a ritual meditation. In this suicidal ritual, I baptize myself with Chinese ink in order to be saved from fear of loss, preserve my identity from the process of self-transformation, and to capture my stray soul in a foreign land.

For review about this performance by Rae Langes, please visit
http://chunhuacatherinedong.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Talking-through-What-is-Lost-by-Rae-Langes.pdf

photo credit: Tongyu Zhao