Community of Parting
On Thursday 20th October Callie’s and AFSAR (Asian Feminist Studio for Art and Research) will present Jane Jin Kaisen’s film Community of Parting (2019). This will be the first Berlin presentation of the work with which Kaisen represented Korea at the 58th Venice Biennale.
The screening will be followed by a conversation between Kaisen and artists Mooni Perry and Hanwen Zhang, the conveners of AFSAR, discussing themes including national borders, translation, and abandonment.
Community of Parting (2019) invokes the ancient shamanic myth of the Abandoned Princess Bari and engages female Korean shamanism as an ethics and aesthetics of memory and mutual recognition. Rooted in oral storytelling and embodied by female shamans, the myth of Bari and her abandonment at birth for being born a girl has been interpreted as a story of filial piety. In her film, Kaisen frames the myth as a story of gender transgression that transcends division in its exploration of othering and loss.
In preparation to make this work, Kaisen conducted extensive research into Korean shamanism and communities affected by war and division. The piece is composed of imagery filmed in Jeju Island, the DMZ, South Korea, North Korea, Kazakhstan, Japan, China, the United States, and Germany. Combining shamanic ritual performances, nature and cityscapes, archival material, aerial imagery, poetry, voiceover, and soundscapes, the piece is configured as a multi-scalar, non-linear, and layered montage loosely framed around Bari’s multiple deaths. Both inter-subjective and deeply personal, Kaisen treats the myth as a gendered tale of migration, marginalization, and resilience.
Artist and filmmaker Jane Jin Kaisen was born 1980 in Jeju Island and lives in Copenhagen. She is a professor at the School of Media Arts, The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts.
Spanning the mediums of video installation, narrative experimental film, photographic installation, performance, and text, Kaisen’s practice is informed by interdisciplinary research and engagement with diverse communities. Her multilayered, performative, poetic, and multi-voiced feminist works bring the past and present into relation. Engaging topics including memory, migration, borders, and translation, she activates the field where lived experience and embodied knowledge intersect with larger political histories. Her works negotiate and mediate the means of representation, resistance, and reconciliation, and form alternative genealogies.
Kaisen is a recipient of a 3-year work grant from the Danish Arts Foundation (2022) and represented Korea at the 58th Venice Biennale alongside artists Hwayeon Nam and siren eun young jung in the exhibition History Has Failed Us, but No Matter curated by Hyunjin Kim.
Kaisen has participated in the biennials of Liverpool, Gwangju, Anren, Jeju, among others. Recent solo exhibitions include Parallax Conjunctures at Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (2021), Community of Parting at Art Sonje Center (2021) and Kunsthal Charlottenborg (2020). She holds a PhD in artistic research from the University of Copenhagen, Department of Art and Cultural Studies, an MFA in Interdisciplinary Studio Art from the University of California Los Angeles, an MA in Art Theory and Media Art from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, and she participated in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program.
Asian Feminist Studio for Art and Research (AFSAR) was founded in 2020 with the aim of establishing connections between contemporary art, scholarly discourse, and activism anchored in (Asian) Feminist thoughts. The prefix Asian brings the Localities of Asia to conceptualise a space for starting dialogues with diverse partners. Its online platform serves as a decentralised virtual space that brings together a wide range of practitioners across disciplines, fostering collective research to develop and support sustainable interactions.
6:30pm: Screening of Jane Jin Kaisen’s film Community of Parting (2019). The film has a duration of 72 min.
8pm: Jane Jin Kaisen in conversation with Mooni Perry and Hanwen Zhang of AFSAR
Admission is free. No registration is required.