Supported by the Liverpool Culture Company and RIBA.
Viewing March 4 2008 18-20.00 at RENEW then continues at International Gallery
Exhibition March 4 to March 21 2008
A huge duck with a foxes head, a Scouse Buddhist monk, an interactive wigwam-igloo and an Indian woman dancing to gospel and techno… just some of the characters, flora and fauna inhabiting artist Kai-Oi Jay Yung’s Paradise Stories exhibition.
Liverpool’s transformation and mankind’s endless pursuit of happiness have inspired Yung to create a unique two venue multi-sensory exhibition that employs a mixture of art forms to explore the quest for utopia, inviting visitors to find a sanctuary from reality and reflect on the city’s journey to current day European Capital of Culture renewal.
In the RENEW Rooms between March 4 and 28, Yung focuses on stories from Liverpool’s inhabitants, featuring subjects from a range of backgrounds, ages, occupations and ethnicities. Through interconnected one-to-one investigations, chance and contrived meetings, her installation crosses sculpture to video installation and live performance, voicing modern day vices, loss, aspirations and solidarity.
People can expect an assault on the senses at RENEW Rooms. Eight videos include an insight into a cab driver’s unsuspecting daily encounters, a feng shui expert talking about how the Chinese Archway was positioned using ancient techniques, and the raised voices from Afro-Caribbean mother and daughter ‘The Wentons’. Their thorny discussion delves into integration across Liverpool since the Toxteth riots. The videos are embedded amongst exuberant day-glow half-animal forms, at once humorous and sinister, and a plethora of explosive improvised jungle surroundings – even a water feature. There is respite though, as a shelter construction offers a degree of escape from the noise of the surrounding plastic Paradise.
Simultaneously in the International Gallery between March 4 and 21, Yung will curate the work of eight artists from Georgia to Stuttgart, presenting a collage of work spanning live performance and sound art to photography. Works include an audience interactive ‘Shadow Tracing’ event, a movement triggered instrumental installation ‘The Note C’, and dreamlike alienation worlds of Maslen and Mehra’s photographed light sculptures.
Kai-Oi Jay Yung said: “I’ve been away from Liverpool for fifteen years and it’s incredible how a city changes but still remains ‘home’. I want to question what it means to be Scouse, especially at a time when all eyes are on its growth and investment. Paradise is a universal yearning; that is why I chose a second venue to voice artist interpretations from Stuttgart to Oregon. I want visitors to see the beauty as well as the reality of how we try to make sense of our lives through the work; this is really about my passion to employ art to connect with real people.”