MV BROWN & CHAO-YING RAO
23.09.22 - 25.09.22 FRENCH STREET GALLERY
The final weekend in Cabbage’s month-long takeover of French Street Gallery culminates with Skin Flicks, an exhibition of work by MV Brown and Chao-Ying Rao. Sharing an interest in the definitions of personhood through the lens of objectification, digital existence, and authenticity, the artists will exhibit new work developed over the past six months.
MV Brown’s work examines transhuman digital existences, where multiple versions or interpretations of oneself sit within a metaverse of identity. Exploring the world of deepfakes and selfies, Brown describes her new work as a “camp display of digital selfhood”, and brings into question the reality of an authentic self; how do we present ourselves digitally and how do others perceive, through their own biases and viewpoints, the different personas we create?
Known for her performance practice, this exhibition shares new digital work created by Brown, but with a continued focus on the human body. Brown’s work looks at the tensions between embodied subjectivity and the body as spectacle. Her work explores themes of narcissism, voyeurism and exhibitionism through a queer lens; as well as reflecting on the performance of daily life, and how we perform our identities
Chao-Ying Rao’s work also examines representations of the self. In this new work, she dissects the persistent fetishisation of Asian women through collaging and reviewing memorable moments in Western culture. Questioning the ideas of the ‘Asian mystique’ and how it manifests in popular culture, Rao examines how the legacy of orientalism continues to manifest in spaces both physical and digital.
For this exhibition Rao will be sharing the space with Sky, a 2016 Abyss RealDoll, and will present a live performance at the exhibition opening. Using the body as a tool of vulnerability and defensiveness, her performances challenge the viewer’s gaze and negotiates the complexities around objectification and audience complicity.
MV Brown would like to thank Saturn Akin at Intertidal Objects for their 3D support throughout this project and also Danny Buksh at GSA Sim Vis. Chao-Ying Rao would like to thank Hannan Jones for sound support and remixing, and Psion Satori for trusting her with the dolls!
This exhibition is the conclusion to a six month period of research and development by the artists, supported by Cabbage through it's Resilience Programme. In addition to funding, the programme offers tailored support to its artists from Cabbage's artist led team. This year, this included Critical Friend sessions with Liv Fontaine and Nina Mdwaba, a Captioning Workshop from Sean Patrick Campbell, and exhibition making support from Jenny Tipton and James Jimbo. More information on the Resilience Programme can be found here.
The exhibition is open 10am - 5pm on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th of September, with an opening on Friday 23rd 6-8pm, featuring live performance from Chao-Ying Rao. The venue is wheelchair accessible and is a five minute walk from Dalmarnock train station.