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Headshot of artist Ahn Lee
Ceramics artwork by Ahn Lee

Ahn Lee, 蠶王 Silkworm Deity,闔家平安 May Our Family Be Safe and Peaceful, and Against All Odds

Ahn Lee's ceramics work, 蠶王 Silkworm Deity,闔家平安 May Our Family Be Safe and Peaceful, and  Against All Odds, involves archival research connecting the Cantonese diaspora and silkworms in the Bay Area; and deepening relations to their familial roots, ancestors, and community. The mythical creatures represented were born by the oracle of the silk cocoon. By raising and exploring the physicality of silkworms and the forgotten legacy of silk sisters, Lee learned about the silk moth’s cocoon and its potential state of reincarnation. Beginning with the legacy of the silkworm, Lee constructs a contemporary Chinese folklore of a future where people emerge from this tense moment of racial violence amidst a global pandemic with power and grace. Following the direction of the silk thread, one may find remnants of the four directional beings, queer diasporic mythical creatures based on the ancient Chinese divinity which were passed down to Lee from their queer grandmother and mother. 

Ahn Lee的陶藝創作涵蓋了連結灣區廣東僑民與絲綢的檔案研究,以及與其家族,祖先與社區更深層的關聯。這些神話生物誕於絲繭神諭。通過養殖於探索蠶蟲與歷史上的絲綢姐妹/阿麽,Lee學習到蠶蛹與其所隱含的輪迴轉世。在此基礎上,Lee建構出一個當代新華裔民俗——在不久的未來,人們回看過往,好似蠶蟲一般,人們在全球大瘟疫之下所產生的族裔歧視暴力緊張時刻都將散去進而浴火重生。沿著絲線的方向,能夠尋獲四向存在的絲絲痕跡,以及從Lee的酷兒祖母與母親所傳承下來的,源自古老中國神祇的酷兒僑居神話。

About Ahn Lee

Ahn Lee (they/she) is a queer Cantonese artist and researcher. Their interdisciplinary practice of ceramics, research and performance relies on a combined methodology of autobiographical re-making and research on the Cantonese diaspora. As a person of Sunwui descent, Ahn explores their ancestral roots to this contested site of capitalism and imperialism through leveraging archival research historiography, critical race and gender theory. Ahn received their MFA in May 2022 from UC Berkeley’s Art Practice Department, where they were the 2021 Jack K. and Gertrude Murphy Awardee. Ahn previously studied in UCLA’s Gender Studies Department as a Eugene V. Cota Robles Graduate Fellow before leaving the program to pursue art full-time. In 2022, Ahn received the Simone V. Leigh Zenobia Award for the Watershed Ceramics Residency. In 2023 Ahn held residencies at Real Space and Time and Anderson Ranch Center for the Arts (Ceramics). Ahn is currently a 2022-23 Fellow at the Headlands Center for the Arts.


Ahn Lee(她們/她)是一位廣東酷兒藝術家兼研究員。依賴於自傳體再創作以及對廣東僑民的研究相結合的手法,在陶瓷、研究與表演方面跨學科實踐其藝術創作。作為一個廣東新會後裔,Ahn通過利用檔案研究史學、批判種族與性別理論,在這個獨具爭議、結合了資本主義及帝國主義的地域探索自己祖先的根源。Ahn於2022年5月從加州大學伯克利分校藝術實踐系獲得藝術碩士學位,是2021年Jack K. and Gertrude Murphy Award藝術基金的獲獎者。之前曾在加州大學洛杉磯分校的性別研究系學習,擔任Eugene V. Cota Robles獎學金的研究生,在該項目完畢後全職從事藝術創作。2022年,作為Watershed Ceramics Residency陶瓷駐館項目的藝術家獲得Simone V. Leigh Zenobia藝術獎。2023年,駐館Real Space and Time以及安德森牧場藝術中心(Anderson Ranch Center for the Arts,陶瓷項目)。Ahn目前為舊金山灣區赫德蘭藝術中心(Headland Center for the Arts) 2022-23年度的研究員。 


Curated in collaboration with CHSA. 

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