My Garden, My Sanctuary at FACT LiverpoolMaja Lorkowska, Exhibitions Editor
Motifs of wellness, water and K-pop intertwine to create My Garden, My Sanctuary, the summer exhibition at FACT. Presented by the gallery’s Curator-in-Residence, Carrie Chan, the show is an immersive journey into anime and K-pop, with a dash of lotus flowers and seaweed from artists Yaloo (South Korea) and Sian Fan (UK).
Both artists use technology to explore their ancestry and to take a closer look at the commodification of East-Asian symbols, sprinkling them throughout their work to reclaim their cultural identities. Liverpool is home to a large Asian population and has a strong history of Asian diaspora, making it a fitting setting for the show.
The large-scale installations and immersive elements will delight audiences, while the gaming environments within the gallery could entice even the most reluctant younger visitors. The show includes a local element too – a series of conversations with members from the University of Liverpool’s K-pop Society and a group of young people from Liverpool will result in a K-pop inspired dance, public performance and a podcast documenting their creative process.
Yaloo’s work is made from a post-colonial, post-Western-centric perspective and focuses on the East Asian context. She uses new video imaging technologies and combines Korean tradition, folk tales and family history with contemporary issues. Her work has a sense of collectivity and multitude with the richness of pattern and layered imagery. The artist’s piece Birthday Garden (2022) is an immersive, ‘underwater’ journey into a seaweed garden.
Sian Fan is an interdisciplinary British-Chinese artist based in London who explores different aspects of life and spirituality in a hyperconnected world. With a background in both art and dance, Fan utilises the body, movement and choreography in her work to examine her identity, heritage and ask even larger questions about belonging and co-existence with technology. In My Garden, My Sanctuary the artist presents a brand new commission Lotus Root (2022) in which she immerses the audience while challenging the stereotypes of female portrayal and femininity in games and anime.
My Garden, My Sanctuary is accompanied by a public programme of family friendly events, workshops, curator tours and artist performances.