Theater, Performance und Tanz in Hamburg - Kampnagel

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Internationales Sommerfestival 2018
Ho Tzu Nyen:

The Critical Dictionary of Southeast Asia, Vol 3: N for Names

  • © Videostill: The Critical Dictionary of Southeast Asia
  • © Videostill: The Nameless
  • © Videostill: The Critical Dictionary of Southeast Asia
  • © Videostill: The Name
  • © Videostill: The Critical Dictionary of Southeast Asia
Film / City / Wheelchair users

The artist Ho Tzu Nyen looks through archives outside of the official history books to find ghostwriters, tigers and triple-agents – and uses them to create a critical dictionary of Southeast Asia.

Ho Tzu Nyen uses historical texts and artifacts to create technically and visually impressive films, video pieces, installations and theater works that have been shown worldwide at festivals and in museums like New York’s Guggenheim and at the Venice Biennale. In his long-term project, THE CRITICAL DICTIONARY OF SOUTH-EAST ASIA, he intensely focuses on Southeast Asia, whose national entities came about as a result of the colonial rule (a subject about which Ho will also speak at the HEIMATPHANTASIEN conference). In order to overcome the national borders and articulate the possibility of another collective identity for the region, he collects metaphors, practices, sounds, biographies and narrations left out of the official history books. As a result, an archive of thousands of hours of audiovisual material has emerged which Ho presents online as a virtual, critical dictionary. He also uses it as a source for his artistic work – for example for the stage-work THE MYSTERIOUS LAI TECK (under “L” for “Lai Teck,”) in the opening week of this year’s festival. For the Kunstverein, he is also developing a large installation with three further works from the encyclopedic series, positioning THE NAMELESS – which also deals with the triple-agent Lai Teck – against his work THE NAME about the mysterious writer Gene Z. Hanrahan, and framing both with a new work based on his virtual dictionary.

Artist Talk with Ho Tzu Nyen and Bettina Steinbrügge (Director Kunstverein) on Friday August 17th, 7 pm (5 Euro / reduced 3 Euro).


Cooperation of Internationalen Sommerfestivals Kampnagel with Kunstverein in Hamburg. Supported by ZEIT-Stiftung Ebelin und Gerd Bucerius.

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