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George Prefers Forks

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Exhibition Overview:

'George Prefers Forks' uses various material forms and visual content to construct a narrative space, where the ontological value of East Asian women (the Yellow Woman) under the current socio-political climate is searched, questioned and scrutinized from Australian history, Hollywood-led pop culture, and the casual practice of cultural engagement in tourism. In this work, the cultural slippage of the ethnic clothing on an Asian women body is depicted through the figure of an Asian woman on photographic images, an accent of speaking English and materiality of silk dresses. The troublesome sartorial relationships offer the reading of a culturally displaced, misplaced and replaced female body. Within the visual motif of hi-lo cultural content, this work playfully indicates that the unique living experiences of the Yellow woman that are shaped not only by the histories of exoticism and oriental fetish, but also by the porous presentation in present societies. Inside the thin space between the skin and fabric, it intends to uncover an overlooked cultural and gender perspective in the narration of diasporic experiences of cultural appropriating and assimilation, and to unfold an aesthetic derived from the Yellow Woman’s negotiation between a real self and a performed self.

Read the transcript of a face-to-face conversation taken between Youjia Lu and Siying Zhou in February 2021 on BLINDSIDE's website

Artist Bio
Siying Zhou is a Melbourne/Naarm based artist. Zhou’s practice draws upon her self-reflection on her Chinese heritage and her ongoing interrogation of the ontological value of the female Asian immigrant to western societies. By producing predominantly installation works, Zhou uses spatial structure and various media to build a complex and contradictory narrative space. In this space, Zhou intends to open an expansive material ground for sociological and philosophical discourses. Zhou is the winner of the Linden Art Prize 2019 and holds Master of Fine Art from the Victorian College of the Arts, the University of Melbourne (2018).

Image: Siying Zhou, 'Untitled (portrait photographs)', 2019, 281.5 x 97 x 0.5cm. Drawing Dashes between Dots, Ararat Art Gallery TAMA 2020. Photograph John Paley | Courtesy the artist.

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