Wu Tsang is an award-winning filmmaker and visual artist based in Berlin and New York. Her films and artworks have been presented in festivals and art exhibitions around the world, including SXSW Film Festival, The Berlinale Film Festival, Toronto Hot Docs International Film Festival, The MoMA, Guggenheim, New Museum, and the Whitney Biennial in New York, Tate Modern London, and LACMA and MOCA in Los Angeles. With her artistic career spanning worldwide, Under Cinema is set to introduce her stunning work to a new caliber of audience.
Under Cinema aims to investigate how artistic practice and its products are positioned to challenge dominant narratives. The exhibition explores issues of voice and representation through innovative filmmaking, questioning the relationship between reality and images as well as the viewer’s gaze. We hold where study will be situated in Gallery 1. This piece portrays two scenes, which unfold in separate projections that intentionally overlap each other, creating a third space of imagery. The film is divided into five chapters derived from the essay Leave Our Mikes Alone written by Moten and Stefano Harney.
The second film premiering in Gallery 2 shares the same name as the exhibition, Under Cinema, a new commission staring the genre-melding singer Kelela. Born Kelela Mizanekristos in Washington DC to Ethiopian immigrant parents, Kelela is the most acclaimed R&B vocalist to rise from the underground music scene. Her newest album Take Me Apart, released on 6 October, has already gained the number three spot on the UK R&B charts. Kelela has collaborated with Wu Tsang in a film that follows the creative process of her newest album.
Under Cinema explores Kelela’s adaptability and fluidity within a system largely built on marker constraints and the notions of a fixed image. The film connects both music and film in a beautiful way to express both the artistic vision of Wu Tsang and the creation of Kelela’s album.
Under Cinema opens at FACT on Thursday 26 October and runs till Sunday 18 February.
Image: Production still, Under Cinema (2017), Film by Wu Tsang. Courtesy of the Artist and Galerie Isabella Bortolozzi, Berlin