Press Release Rotterdam, 24 April 2013 HEMAN CHONG, SINGAPOREAN ARTIST AND WRITER, HAS BEEN INVITED TO MODERATE A PROGRAM OF CONTEMPORARY DISCOURSE AND PRODUCTION TITLED MODERATION(S), MODERATION(S), RUNNING FOR MORE THAN A YEAR AND TAKING PLACE BETWEEN WITTE DE WITH CENTER FOR CONTEMPORARY ART, ROTTERDAM AND SPRING WORKSHOP, HONG KONG. MODERATION(S) KICKED OFF 1919 -20 APRIL 2013 AT WITTE DE WITH, WITH A THING AT A TIME: TIME: FEAT. PERFORMANCES BY METTE EDVARDSEN, ANTHONY MARCELLINI, ESZTER SALAMON, BENJAMIN SEROR, AND KOKI TANAKA, ON SITE INTERVENTIONS BY WRITER GUY MANNESMANNES-ABBOTT AND A LECTURE BY PERFORMA FOUNDER ROSELEE GOLDBERG. MODERATION(S) 7 January 2012 – 10 August 2014 Imagine a group of people meeting at different times, in different places and in different constellations over more than a year’s span, slowing down time and embracing pleasure as a core value whilst multiple projects unfold. You embrace speech to tell your story, you agree to learn or develop a language together, you embrace spontaneous conversation, you agree to script and moderate. The multimulti-faceted Moderation(s) program by Heman Chong engenders a conference, three exhibitions including a performance weekend, three residencies, and a book of short stories. Moderation(s) involves more than fifty artists, curators, and writers, including A Constructed World, Nadim Abbas, Lee Ambrozy, Oscar van den Boogaard, Latitudes, Michael Lee, Gabriel Lester, Christina Christina Li, Bik van der Pol, Eszter Salamon, and Koki Tanaka. Tanaka Moderation(s) sets out to create both time and space allowing for a specific kind of creative production where instead of rapid installation and short-term consumption, each project embraces the need for long-term development and a slowing down of the artistic processes. Moderation(s) kicked off in Hong Kong on 7 January 2013 with curatorial duo Latitudes in residence at Spring, and will wrap up with the group exhibition The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else to open on 8 May 2014. During A Thing At A Time -the Moderation(s) kick-off at Witte de With on 19 and 20 April 2013- five artists whose work relates to both the depths and the limits of speech as a means to share or convey an experience (Koki Koki Tanaka, Anthony Marcellini), Benjamin Seror, Mette Evardsen) Eszter Marcellini a story (Benjamin Evardsen or to speak of nothing at all (Eszter Salamon), Salamon came together to stage scenarios of speech and encounter within a constellation of performances. Alongside these performances RoseLee Goldberg, Goldberg Director of Performa, gave a lecture about the early days of the downtown community in New York and how the relationships between artists of different disciplines and the community were so critical to the 1970s and how this informed the beginnings of Performa. Writer Guy MannesMannes-
Abbott was invited as a witness to the two-day program, his textual interventions were on view on Witte de With’s first floor. Unfolding through gestures, the performances part of A Thing At A Time approach speech not as an abstract or ideal phenomenon, but rather as something which is embodied, and as such palpable. From the actual holding of an object whilst listening to someone speak in Marcellini’s Slowly Breathe in…and Out…Through the Object to Salamon’s dance to the words of Cage’s Lecture on Nothing, each performance bridges the distance between the physicality of an object or a body and the immateriality of spoken words. Upcoming: Noted Dutch novelist Oscar van den Boogaard will be writer-in-residence at Spring in June 2013. During A Fictional Residency he will be meeting and working with Hong Kong based artists, journalists and academics. These encounters will inspire a series of short stories, which van den Boogaard will write on his own or together with the invited guests. Stories And Situations: The Moderation(s) Conference, an event in which discourse and distance are the quintessential subject matters, takes place on 5 October 2013 at Witte de With. For this, curators and writers Lee Ambrozy (Editor of artforum.com.cn), Amira Gad (Associate Curator/Publications, Witte de With), Christina Li (Independent curator and writer), and Xiaoyu Weng (Asia Programs Kadist Foundation) are invited to work in collaboration with moderator Heman Chong to stage a discursive and performative event. The Social Contract asks the audience to become more aware of their own role in the production of an exhibition. In this work by A Constructed World (Geoff Lowe and Jacqueline Riva), residents at Spring from 14 October to 15 November 2013, the viewer is invited to sign a legally binding confidentiality agreement before entering the project space of Spring. After their visit, the viewer is bound by contract not to discuss what they saw inside the exhibition. As the closing act to Moderation(s), a large-scale group exhibition at Witte de With will be staged by moderator Heman Chong. The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else (8.05.2014 – 10.08.2014) will include works by many of the artists who have been involved throughout Moderation(s). Ranging across a spectrum of diverse international artists whose practices involve the notion of gesture Witte de With becomes the site where images, objects and texts from selected parts of previous projects are restaged, forming an entirely new landscape in which these parts can be viewed in relation to other parts. With artists Nadim Nadi m Abbas, Bik Van der Pol, Lee Kit, Michael Lee, Gabriel Lester, Melvin Moti, Ang SongSong- Ming, Praneet Soi, Ho Sin Tung, Warren Leung and Sara Wong, Johan Zetterquist, Zetterquist amongst others. Preceding the Rotterdam KickKick -off: Initiated by Witte de With Director Defne Ayas and Spring Founder Mimi Brown, Brown the program started in August 2012 with a performative teaser. Presented at Spring, in Hong Kong, Guilty Pleasures by artist Ang Song Song- Ming engaged the assembled audience as participants in the setting of a listening party. Having been asked to bring along a song they considered to be their “guilty pleasure,” the audience members then took turns “confessing” as to why they found their song both enjoyable and incriminating, before playing it for the crowd.
Moderation(s) kicked off in in Hong Kong in January 2013 with Incidents Of Travel by curatorial duo Latitudes (Mariana Cánepa Luna and Max Andrews). During their residency at Spring they investigated the urban territory from a curatorial perspective by looking into how it is articulated through specialist tours and attractions, phenomena at the edge of the cultural, tourism and leisure sectors. For this the duo invited four Hong Kongbased artists –Nadim Nadim Abbas, Ho Sin Tung, Yuk King Tan and Samson Young– Young to develop day-long tours, thus retelling the city and each participant’s artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. You can find extensive documentation of Latitudes’ artist-led explorations of Hong Kong here. OnOn- going: From April 2013 onwards, Hong Kong born writer and curator Christina Li takes up the role of a designated Witness to Moderation(s) as it unfolds between Witte de With in Rotterdam and Spring in Hong Kong. As such, Li will post regular blog entries responding to the many projects part of Moderation(s). An on-going project part of Moderation(s) is Bibliotheek (Library), a list of books that functions both as a bibliography for Moderation(s), as well as a physical library installed at both Witte de With and Spring. All participants to the project are invited to suggest books, creating an ever-expanding common library that can be replicated easily by any individual, community, or institution. About Heman Chong Heman Chong is an artist, curator and writer. His art practice involves an investigation into the philosophies, reasons and methods of individuals and communities imagining the future. Charged with a conceptual drive, this research is then adapted into objects, images, installations, situations or texts. Chong has developed solo exhibitions at Rossi & Rossi (London), SOTA Gallery (Singapore), NUS Museum (Singapore), Kunstverein Milano (Milan), Motive Gallery (Amsterdam), Hermes Third Floor (Singapore), Vitamin Creative Space (Guangzhou), Art In General (New York), Project Arts Centre (Dublin), Ellen de Bruijne Projects (Amsterdam), The Substation (Singapore), Kuenstlerhaus Bethanien (Berlin), Sparwasser HQ (Berlin). His work has also been shown extensively in group exhibitions including San Francisco Asian Art Museum, Kumho Museum of Art, Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona, Kroeller-Muller Museum, Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Nam June Paik Art Center, Gertrude Contemporary, Arnolfini, Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, Hamburger Bahnhof, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Kadist Art Foundation, Daejeon Museum of Art. About Witte de With Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art is an international public institution with Rotterdam as its home base. Established in 1990, Witte de With explores developments in contemporary art worldwide and presents this through exhibitions, theoretical and educational programs, public events and publications. Press: For requests, please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling +31 (0)10 411 01 44.