A digital archive of Asian/Asian American contemporary art history

Tsong, Jane

Artist Website

Jane Tsong has been creating multi-media installations, small-scale pieces of conceptual work, performances and documentations. Major recurring questions in her works are: "What is the place of women's silence in history and 'official' culture? How can the body speak through its own knowledge and authenticity? How can we express the psychological life behind silence without falsifying it?" (Cited from the poster for the artist video installation "Butt-Walk and Mouth Music") As Tsong believes that every living human being including herself is in ways a stranger to culture and considers her art practice an interstitial activity straddling the intertices of culture itself, the key of her works seems to be in subverting dominant belief systems and cultural icons, thereby embodying the desired situations of powerless and neglected others which seem to be impossible to realize in their present lives. Tsong wrote of these conditions of impossibility as, "Couldn't these become models for an expansive kind of cultural Capital, around which circulate alternative economies of pleasure/self?" Then, as Robert D. Putnam wrote in his article "Against The Tide? Small Groups, Social Movements, and the Net", Tsong might be able to bring problems hitherto dealt with in isolation into a communal forum, recast her points as cultural and social problems needing social and spiritual remedies and bring what were thought to be private problems into the public realm. She would be able to serve needs for many ignored people who might otherwise lack access to cultural and social capital. Besides her subversive effort to deconstruct the present established hierarchy of our cultural capital, some of Tsong's installations such as "Emergency Living System for Jane and Rain" also show a location for meditative living and provide an enlightened perspective to let viewers reconsider their own lives and roles within their environment.

Review by Young Park

Gallery of Selected Works

Artist Uploaded Images