Kobe Ko (HK)
Curator Kobe Ko attends to every detail of Ice Wong Kei Suet'sThere's no beginning. There's No End.
Here she salvages material residue from the three-day durational performance.
At Hidden Space, October 2020
For the last two shows of 2020, Hidden Space collaborated with Hong Kong curator Kobe Ko. Kobe had proposed a group show featuring four young Hong Kong women artists as part of her newly created Post-human Narratives project. Due to the pandemic, what should have been the first physical exhibition of the project in early 2020 didn't happen, but forced to be adaptive, Kobe embraced the challenge, pivoted online, developed a flexible approach and brought us two vital performances to close out the year.
More Hidden Space and Kobe Ko collaborations are in the pipeline. In the meantime, we sat down with Kobe (remotely), for our first curator interview.
Hidden Space (HS): How did you start the Post-human Narratives Project
Kobe Ko (KK): The initial idea was appeared straight after I finished my Masters thesis in between 2018-19, I was inspired a lot by Donna Haraway’s discourse, which interpreted science fictions’ fantasies in a political way, combining and reorganising the corrupt practices while over-reliance on identity. Haraway proposed ‘affinity’ as a replacement, it seems to be a feasible method to face social division after the social movement in 2014. Throw back to the time I started up this project, movement in 2019 and the pandemic hadn't happened yet, but the inspiration and power of the ‘post-human’ theory is much more stronger to me while experiencing all these.
HS: how it’s developed this year under pandemic conditions (I’m thinking how you pivoted to online/ virtual content plus flexibly putting on physical shows) your plan for future development
KK: The original plan was to pilot a small group show of four local young artists then follow by a big one which get established and overseas artists involved, the idea of going virtual is suggested by a designer friend, mainly for archiving at the most beginning. Not sure if it is lucky or not, the pandemic conditions was getting serious by February, the plan was ruined and we quickly changed it, the first thing came into my head is ‘What kind of mediums can work online without twisting the audience experience’, which should be photos and videos, so we decided to exhibit artworks of Mayumi Hosokura on our webpage as a kick off. So, I would say it is just by chance but unexpectedly gained lots of experience and becoming experienced to deal with different art forms right after our first show. As it is a self-funded project so there are loads of voluntary works, relatively speaking money issue is the only limit, I must say our team is very supportive and will to experiment.
HS: Something specific about your curatorial experience for the two performances at Hidden.
KK: Eventually there are some art forms which we think it is not the best way to go virtual, so we collaborated with Hidden Space for Ice and Florence’s performance artworks. Luckily HS team is enthusiastic on experimenting as well, surprisingly they are open with Ice playing with sugar and Florence improvising with the space of the whole floor in the building. It is the first time I curated in a white cube(?), so there are lots of interesting and fruitful discussions happened in between, also a huge support on lighting issue, HS is a space where gathered heartwarming people and full of creative energy, it is truly my pleasure to work with them and definitely looking forward to the next collaboration - it'll be a homecoming!
Kobe KO (HK), graduated from the Dept. of Creative Arts and Culture of The Hong Kong University of Education, and has an MA in Gender Studies from Shih Hsin University, Taiwan. She is a curator, writer, life model, and one of the co-founders of nomad nomad. As well as the ongoing Post-human Narratives, her curatorial projects include CHOW KAI CHIN Community Art Experimental Project (2013 & 2014), Jubilee, solo exhibition of Mayumi Hosokura (2017), -Fade away- Solo exhibition of Mitsuru Nishimura (2018).