(re) Appearing Acts (2010- ongoing)
APPEARING ACT (from the Greek Photos Graphos :written/drawn/painted with light) is the photographic process through which Carô Gervay interacts with the notions of identity. Through visual experimentations of writing, drawing and painting with light, this process inquires into the underlying violence and the roles played by the photographic medium in relation to those themes and is informed by the histories of colonialism, personal stories and present socio-political contexts and concerns.
Going back and forth between family archives, conversations and the red lights of the lab, the photographer asks questions of the many “we” - we (could) belong to and how photographs define us as a species.
Going through layers of memories, masks, shadows, erasure and silence, this body of work points at the ruptures in transmission affecting diaspora communities, in her case as a woman of Vietnamese heritage. This also feeds into the current debates in the UK arts, which is still trying to adequately understand and include global demographics, such as South-East Asian perspectives.
Classe de 10e D Collège Saint Exupéry, année 1964-1965, Sài Gòn.
2016. Looking at the photograph of his childhood, he said:
"See, I wasn't more French than them then"
Appearing Act-Performing Identities-Sài Gòn-60s-
Carô Gervay, Appearing Act -Viết đi, Viết lại- (Write, Rewrite),
installation detail, 2018
'Revived' 07 May – 25 June 2023
Vincom Center for Contemporary Art (VCCA)
B1-R3, Royal City
72A Nguyễn Trãi, Thanh Xuân, Hà Nội
Curator: Đỗ Tường Linh, Mai Nguyên Anh
Artists: Nhu Xuan Hua, Nadia Cao, Hiền Hoàng, Serena Chang, Nguyễn Thủy Tiên, Kvet Nguyễn, Caroline Gervay
The desire to record, preserve memories and tell stories has always been a long-lasting desire of human beings, making us distinctive from other species. How do artists find strategies to immune themselves from the overwhelming stock of images that dominate our daily lives and stay true to their stories?
Revived invited artists using photographs as a point of departure to explore various ways of understanding oneself, understanding the world, exploring unconscious modes of thinking, and imagining an image. Using multiple sources such as archival family photos, documentation, performances, and installations, the artists in the show slowly reveal not just their intimate stories but also put us in positions to question our consumption of images.
Photos: Pham Tuan Ngoc