Made from local and imported ingredients Orissa Keane & Min-Young Her
Opening preview: Thursday 5 August, 5.30pm
Rāpare 5 Here-turi-kōkā, 5:30pm
Exhibition runs: 6 August—4 September [extended: 2 October 2021]
Rāpare 5 Here-turi-kōkā—Rāhoroi 4 Mahuru
Mouth: used to speak or to ingest. Mouth: the site where a river enters the ocean.
Her and Keane take the phrase ‘have you eaten rice yet?’ as a departure point for this collaborative project. Common across many Asian languages and often used in passing as a greeting, ‘have you eaten rice yet?’ holds multiple associations with care: it is an inquiry into well-being as much as being a literal question about eating and food. Within this project, the expression offers a means of engaging with the slippages between written and spoken language.
While developing this installation the artists hosted a series of shared meals for friends and strangers alongside chopstick-making workshops facilitated by Rekindle. With these events as a base, Made from local and imported ingredients centres food, language, mapping, and people.
Her and Keane present work which explores physical and poetic connections between rivers and the body, specifically the Ōtākaro and Ōpāwaho Rivers, where they meet at the estuary and where they reach the ocean. Another element of their mapping extends to a gesture of care to the gallery, the application of beeswax floor polish. With this action, Her and Keane offer the possibility of recording movement through the gallery over time in the same way we might follow the flow of a river, a sentence, or a recipe.
The Ōtakaro and Ōpāwaho awa, the estuary they merge in, and the mouth they run out of were an important mahika kai for Kāi Tahu, providing food and resources for local and visiting iwi. Blue Oyster Art Project Space, the artists (tauiwi) and this project acknowledge this takata whenua history.
Listen to audio works from Made from local and imported ingredients:
Orissa Keane is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Ōtautahi. Driven by an interest in language, systems, and conventions, Keane’s work tends to be light-hearted and experimental; exposing, subverting and convoluting things taken-for-granted.
Min-Young Her (b. 1997) is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Ōtautahi and is of South Korean heritage. Her’s work primarily focuses on viewer discomfort, creating tactile environments that require a trust in vulnerability. This uneasiness or constructed disconnect is a device to explore the tensions in human relationships and to test the limits of our communicative abilities.
In their previous collaborative project, As you come down, part of Monitor 3.0 at The Physics Room (2020), Her and Keane explored the position of the ‘emerging’ artist with humour and sincerity by inviting gallery visitors to share in the experience of their collaboration. Another recent project, Art Seconds (2021), at The Den dismantled common notions of value and gallery etiquette, taking on a confused managerial and curatorial role where the artists collected, exhibited, and sold unwanted artworks on behalf of a range of anonymous artists and makers.