Artist talk: Ana Paz and Ninnie Yeo
24 Sept, 13–14

Accompanying the exhibition to whom I direct my longing is an artist talk between the curator C. Grace Chang and the artists Ana Paz and Ninnie Yeo. The event will be held in English and take place at Skånes konstförening.

The exhibition is a part of this year’s Third Space Residency, during which each artist-in-residence was asked to create a video artwork based on a literary passage from Akwaeke Emezi’s 2018 novel Freshwater. Though various themes stick out in this passage—replenishment, dreaming, longing, kinship—Ninnie and Ana have examined the concept of rest in relation to loss, connection, and communities of color. Complementing the video are specifically designed soundscapes and a pervasive use of blue throughout the gallery. The exhibition title, pulled from Emezi’s own words, brings to mind both the care associated with longing and the occasional directionlessness or namelessness of it. We can long for versions of ourselves, other people, specific goals, or places that don’t even exist anymore.

While the artists have each taken a different approach, certain commonalities have arisen. Both artworks use soundscapes that draw from symbolism and traditions in the global south—specifically: Brazil, China, and Southeast Asia—to create layered, immersive experiences. The color blue wends its way through the different installations of both artists, playing with the many associations with blue: a myriad of religious traditions, superstitions, sadness, soothing, or even death. The artists use this space to reflect on rest as something active, or as something that morphs with context.

About The Residency

to whom I direct my longing is the exhibition for our Third Space Residency, which focuses on QTBIPOC artists in Skåne. Though participants can have arts degrees, we choose not to focus on formal backgrounds. Instead, we select based on ideas, talent, and drive. The residency’s overall aims are to create community and opportunity, and to nurture local talent.

The term “third space” is used by a few disciplines. Postcolonial theorist Homi K. Bhabha uses it to describe the social and cultural in-betweenness that follows colonization. We use “third space” to reflect on the ways in which marginalized people form spaces where they are not only the ones being talked about—they’re also the ones doing the talking.

Third Space Residency was created by Skånes konstförening’s curator C. Grace Chang.