From To: The Spirit of Hands

@ 7 p.m.

Western Front is pleased to live-stream a new performance by Brian Fuata, concluding his online residency hosted in collaboration with the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery alongside its Image Bank exhibition. The performance will be recorded at the Queensland Art Gallery & Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA) in Brisbane, Australia, where Fuata is simultaneously in residence to create new work for the 10th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art.

For both residencies, Fuata has been exploring correspondence archives housed at each institution, and the practical and iconographic appearance of hands in correspondence art practice, with his own email performances and structured improvisations that use the figure of the ghost as a narrative device. For the Belkin and Western Front, Fuata has taken inspiration from the Hand of the Spirit, an image icon widely circulated among Image Bank, General Idea, and other artists in the early 1970s. At QAGOMA, HAND SPACE, two collaged diaries made by Robert MacPherson and sent to Peter Tyndall during 35 years of postal exchange, form Fuata’s conceptual starting point.

From To: The Spirit of Hands is a 20-minute structured improvisation, composed of historical references and text generated through conversation, correspondence, and email performances staged during Fuata’s residencies. The performance will also incorporate Fuata’s material surroundings as potential subject matter as an act of unfolding relations. The performance is timed, so when Fuata’s mobile alarm rings, it will end where it is.

The performance will be followed by a conversation between Fuata and Western Front’s Executive Director, Susan Gibb.

Western Front presents this event with the support of QAGOMA, Brisbane, and the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver. Additional support for the online residency was received from Partners in Art.

About the Artist

Brian Fuata is an artist working in the improvisation of performance, text, language, film, and installation who has garnered international acclaim for his innovative interpolation of media. His work is underscored by a political ethos of horizontalism—a system of non-hierarchical relations—where objects and ephemera, and both real and imagined personal and public histories, are given equal value in producing content. He is trained in postdramatic theatre, a fusion of performance art and experimental theatre characterised by a non-linear narrative; the performer as theme and protagonist; multiple registers of presentation and points of reception; and reflexivity, accumulation and self-referentiality. Working with ad hoc scores, Brian employs these properties and concepts to orchestrate performance and consequently his physical environment to produce objects and visual ephemera.