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Jesse Chun


September 1, 2020
–September 15, 2020

Jesse Chun, SULLAE 술래, 2020, 6′ 24″, voiced and voiceless consonant sounds of the English language, hangeul (한글) and English text, images, index pages from intonation books, white noise, word censor bleep, dimensions variable (single-channel version and three-channel version).

SULLAE 술래 translates systems of language, power, and legibility by looking to the Moon as a conceptual site; addressing it not only as a poetic metaphor but also as a colonial site. In this video, moving images of a traditional, precolonial Korean women’s Moon dance, gang gang sullae (강강술래), are interwoven with consonants of the English language, Hangeul (한글) and English text, various index pages from intonation books, white noise, and word-censor bleep. Chun highlights the way in which this dance was historically used as a means for unleashing silenced anger: release through song, bellowing, yelling, and circling under the Moon. The video oscillates between the sonic, visual, and semiotic; undoing the English language, its embodied violence and dominance through abstraction and mistranslation—a process the artist describes as unlanguaging. In SULLAE 술래, the Moon encircles a multiplicity of systems, languages and untranslatable memories—simultaneously transcribing and unlanguaging, so one can shout into the night, under its warm shadow.

This video has been selected as part of a programmatic takeover by independent curator Daisy Desrosiers that will unfold for the remaining part of 2020.

Past Shift Key Programmes

A still from Cecilia Vicuña "Paracas" (1983)
Cecilia Vicuña
A Still from Cauleen Smith "Pilgrim" (2017)
Cauleen Smith
Mona Hatoum
Aura Satz
Preemptive Listening (Part 1: The Fork in the Road)