“Your body is your last asset. Everything is going to be within your body, your body is the final frontier. I consider your body to be the network itself.”
– Shu Lea Cheang
Taiwanese multimedia art pioneer Shu Lea Cheang’s works in film, net art, participatory impromptu multi-player performance, video, and installation.
Some of Cheang’s main concerns are feminist and queer politics, and the body and sex in the technological age: the Bionet. Pushing beyond her earlier preoccupations with the Net and Cyberpunk as seen in her classic Cyberporn film “I.K.U.”, Shu Lea Cheang’s current film project, “FLUIDØ,” focuses on what Cheang describes as the Bionet. Here, the artist explores “skin as interface, the body as final frontier.”(3) FLUIDØ’s transgressive and masterfully stylized vision involves freeing the body from gender norms, the manipulations and greed of the Bio-Technological Complex and the state’s control and surveillance.
While working as a socially engaged media activist in New York City through the 1980’s and 1990’s, Cheang evolved into a Net- and Media artist of note. This US based period of her work cumulated in the seminal Net-art piece BRANDON (1998-1999), the first ever Guggenheim Museum’s web art commission.
Cheang has made two theatrical feature films: Fresh Kill, which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival in 1994 and was included in Whitney Biennale (New York) in 1995; and I.K.U., which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2000.
Since moving to Europe in 2000, Cheang has been staging large scale collaborative performance and installation art projects. Leading a deliberately nomadic lifestyle, Shu Lea Cheang currently divides her time between Paris and Berlin.
Shu Lea Cheang took part in SomoS’ 2015 Fixation exhibition with four photographic works related to her I.K.U. and FLUIDØ films/art projects.
1979, Master of Arts, Cinema Studies, New York University
1976, Bachelor of Arts, History, National Taiwan University
Projects, Exhibitions, Net, Installations, Interface, Web, Digital, Performance, Film
Curator STWST48- crashing the information in 48 hours, for Stadtwerkstatt, in
association with Ars Elecronica, Linz, Austria.
Part of London-based AHRC funded research project – BODIES OF PLANNED OBSOLESCENCE digital performance and the global politics of electronic waste. Organized by The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, London
Guest chief editor for Changer L’argent- We grow money, we eat money, we shit money published by MCD, Magazine des Cultures Digitales, Paris.
FLUIDØ , casting call as performance, Vorspiel, transmediale, Berlin
UKI performance, Sight&Sound, Eastern Bloc, Montreal.
Composting the net at DAKAR Biennale, Senegal.
Seeds Underground at FIELDS, Riga, Latvia
The soft, the hard and the wet residency & performance, as curator for STWST, Linz. Typing, Reading , two video published at Seditionart.com
CRISISRUS by LaptopsRus, Alpha nova-kulturwerkstatt & Galerie futura Berlin.
UKI enter the BioNet, Piksel Festival, Norway
UKI viral love, exhibition Furtherfield gallery, London.
Composting the city | Composting the net – performance at transmediale, Berlin & New Media Culture ART+COMMUNICATION 2013, Riga, Latvia
CRISISRUS by LaptopsRus, perform at Piksel (Norway), Vision’R (Paris)
Composting the city – launched composting system with resource, transmediale. Le Graine et La Compost – residency at Gaite Lyrique, Paris
BABY WORK , installation, 3rd edition of Locker Baby Project, commissioned by Remediating the Social – Inspace, University of Edinburgh and Zero1 Biennale, San Jose.
MOVING FOREST London edition with Cultural Studies, Goldsmiths College & Chelsea College of Arts
CYCLEX media art and farming initiative, Andes, New York, USA
Stormy weather stirred – a teapot for MzTEK – ChiTek –V&A Museum, London UKI viral game, in development with medialab Prado (Madrid) & LABoral (Gijon) UKI viral performance, launch live code live spam tour, performing in Rome, Berlin,
Bilbao and Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid.
UKI a viral game, in development with PLAYLAB at medidalab PRADO, Madrid. GREEN RUSH, a project sharing food talking series based in Paris.
in the city of Sofia 1989-2009, DVD, installation .Move, Halle, Germany. UKI a viral performance, artist residency at Hangar lab Barcelona. LAPTOPSRUS, collective women live performers’ network project.
HAIL THE REVOLUTION DOWN THE SOUP KITCHEN, installatio, FACT,
MOVING FOREST collective performance with AKA the CASTLE, Transmediale 08. AGLIOMANIA web/ installation L’Impresa dell’Arte , Palazzo delle Arti Napoli EXPLICIT EXPRESS – i am you are high on milk (performance), Arteleku, Spain
MOBIOPERA collective public mobilephone cinema, Sundance Film Festival New Frontier.
PORTA2030 by TAKE2030, performative urgency network exercise. Node London.. PLENUM by KOP in collaboration with xxxxx , 12 hour plenary session,NodeLondon.
BABY LOVE , wifi mobile installation, Palais de Tokyo, Paris LOVEME2030 DVD fiction (30:00) Paris edition , Movie Japan commission. FLUID installation, Detox festival at Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo , Norway.
RICHAIR2030 by TAKE2030, wifi roaming performance, toured 10 European cities MILK web, 56K bastard TV commission, Switzerland.
FLUID installation, Detox festival at Sorlandets Kunstmuseum , Norway.
TRAMJAM RUSH HOUR by Mumbai Streaming Attack, touring performance.
INTER—MISSION, THE BALLAD of (UN)DESIRABLE, installation, HGKZ,
ROLL OVER, CHINA DOLL installation/performance, MissChina Nuit Blanche2003. PLATINUM SNAPMEAT, performance event, OUT FESTIVAL2003, Los Angeles. GARLIC=RICH AIR 2030, net installation, Limbo Zone, Venice Biennale. RICHAIR2030 performance/ installation, Zone of Urgency, Venice Biennale.
BURN interface/installation, FACT (Liverpool, UK), Zone of Urgency, Venice Biennale.
GARLIC=RICHAIR, public network project, Creative Time, New York
HUMANMATERIALMACHINEFACTOR artist as mentor, DASARTS, Amsterdam
DRIVE BY DINING installation/performance, Wireless Browser Day, Amsterdam
STOP website, Amnesty International
APT. website, xcult
Shrink to Fit, Switzerland
KINGDOM OF PIRACY net project, co-curation with Armin Medosch, Yukiko Shikata EVERYONE IS AN EXPERT, Interface/installation, Make-World Festival (Munich) EXPAND , web, Shopping Window net art exhibition, www.telepolis.de (Germany) BABY PLAY, net worked installation, NTT[ICC] InterCommunication Center (Tokyo)
I.K.U. scifi feature, produced by Uplink Tokyo, premiered Sundance Film Festival. CARRY ON web installation, International Woman University IFU (Hanover)
BRANDON, one year web project with installation, The Guggenheim Museum and Waag Society
BUY ONE GET ONE networked installation, NTT[ICC] Biennale, Tokyo
ELEPHANT CAGE BUTTERFLY LOCKER,, public net art project (Okinawa & Tokyo)
BOWLING ALLEY net worked installation, Walker Art Center (Minneapolis)
FRESH KILL 35mm feature film. Berlin Film Festival. Whitney Biennial, Channel 4 (UK)
TO ENTER installation, The Final Frontier, The New Museum of Contemporary Art
THOSE FLUTTERING OBJECTS OF DESIRE ,installation, Exit Art , Whitney Biennial
THE AIRWAVES PROJECT installation, Capp Street Project, San Francisco
COLOR SCHEMES, installation, Whitney Museum of American Art
WILL BE TELEVISED, 5 part video documents of Asia’s social movement, DDTV
MAKING NEWS MAKING HISTORY installation, American Film Institute, ICP, NYC
80s in New York City
PAPER TIGER TV (1980-1990), public access TV, producing member.
DEEP DISH TV (1984-1990), public access satellite TV, producing member.
Baby Love (2005), DSL collection, Paris.
BRANDON (1998-1999), The Guggenheim Museum, New York
Buy One Get One (1997), NTT[ICC] InterCommunication Center, Tokyo Bowling Alley (1995), Walker Art Center Gallery 9, Minneapolis
Color Schemes (1986), Museum of Modern Art, New York
The Trial of Tilted Arc (1985), Museum of Modern Art, New York
Watermans art center, London, UK 2015
FIELDS exhibition, RiXC, Riga Latvia 2014
FURTHERFIELD gallery exhibition 2013
Composting the city|Composting the net, transmediale 2012-2013 BABY WORK ZERO1 Biennale 2012
UKI at la internacional cuir, Museo Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid 2011 UKI at MEM festival, Biabao, 2011
UKI at Porn Film Festival, Berlin 2011
UKI at Live Performers Meetng, Rome, 2011
UKI at Piksel, Bergen, Norway, 2010
Agliomania at Wealth of Nations, Spike Island, Bristol, UK., 2010
Milk+, Videotage, Hong Kong, 2010
Mutante, Emmetrop, Bourges, France, 2010
Move, Halle, Germany, 2009
Wealth of Nations, Novi Sad, Serbia, 2009
Women’s work, Osage Gallery, Hong Kong, 2008
Agliomania at PAN, Palazzo delle Arti Napol, 2008
TAKE2030 at Waves, HMKV Dortmund, 2008
Metamorphosing Female, Osage gallery, Shanghai , Hong Kong 2008
MobiOpera, Sundance Film Festival 2007, LA OUT festival 2007.
BABYLOVE, PALAIS DE TOKYO, Paris , National Taiwan Museum of Art, ISEA San Jose
01 festival, Chelsea Art Musuem New York, Experimental playground Melboune,
Sydney, Perth and Rogaland Kunstmuseum, Norway (2005- 08)
THE ART FORMERLY KNOWN AS NEW MEDIA, The Banff New Media Institute, 2005 RHIZOME ARTBASE 101 @ The New Museum, 2005
NTT[ICC], OPEN NATURE, Tokyo, (Spring, 2005).
FLUID, Sorlandets Kunstmuseum and Kunstnernes Hus, Oslo, Norway (2004 – 2005)
TAKE2030 at VIPER FESTVIAL (October 2004)
TRAMJAM at DEAF ( Rotterdam 2004)
VENICE BIENNIAL (June, 2003), Z.O.U. (Zone of Urgency) curated by Hou Hanru. HARDCORE (February, 2003), Palais de Tokyo, Paris, curated by Jerome Sans.
NEW MEDIA LOUNGE (February, 2003) The FACT Center, Liverpool.
UNPLUGGED, ARS ELECTRONICA (2002), Linz, Austria
METROPOLIS (2002), Chicago Art Fair.
AIMll: LUNA PARK PROJECT (2002), Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), LA
SCIFI DIGI PORN (2001) , Julia Friedman Gallery, Chicago
IKU (2000), premiered at Sundance Film Festival. Selected Screenings: Fantasia Film Festival; Montreal; Nat Film Festival; Copenhagen; Asian CineVision Festival; New York; Ars Electronica, Linz; Institute of Contemporary Art, ICA; London; Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio; “Body as Byte”, Kunstmuseum Luzern, Switzerland; Creteil Femme Film Festival, Independent Film Festival, Argentina; “City of Women” , Slovene national Cinematheque, Ljubljana; Mix Brasil; Mediarama, Electronic Art & New Technologies
Festival, Seville, Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo; Museo Nacional Centro
de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid .
Dystopia and Identity in the Age of Global Communication (2000), Tribe Gallery, NYC FLUID (2000), The Project, gallery installation, New York, Taipei Fine Art Museum Biennale TOKYO IKU (2000), gallery installation, Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo
THEATRUM ANATOMICUM (1998-1999), installation, Amsterdam
JOHANNESBURG BIENNALE ( (1997)
NTT [ICC] BIENNALE (1997), Tokyo.
FRESH KILL, Those Fluttering Objects of Desire, WHITNEY BIENNALE (1993, 1995), NYC COLOR SCHEMES, WHITNEY MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART (1990), New York
Fellowships, Grants, Prizes, Honors, Residencies
2014 UKI enter the bionet, Interactive Experience grant Pictanovo, France
2013 residency with ALOTOF, [A Laboratory On The Open Fields] at OKNO, Brussels 2013 Eleanore residency, Linz, Austria
2012 Artist in residency, APO33, Nantes, France
2011 Artist in residency, Plataforma Cero, Gijón, Spain
2010 – 2011 Artist in residency, medialab-Prado, Madrid
2009 Artist in residency, Hangar media lab, Barcelona.
2009 Artist in Residency with EMARE program, Sofia, Bulgaria.
2005-2006 Culture Ministry France, Cite des Arts residency
2003-2004-2005-2006 Arts Council England.
2002, Challenge to the Field Award, Lyn Blumenthal Memorial Fund
2001, Civitella Ranieri Fellowship, artist-in-residency, Italy Fellowship, Japan
research residency, Asian Cultural Council
2000, MARS Exploratory Media Lab, GMD Institut für Medienkommunikation Germany 2000, innovative filmmaker of outstanding achievement, Mix Festival, New York 1998-1999, The Mondriaan Foundation , the Ministry for Cultural Affairs in Holland, The Bohen Foundation, The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Artist in Residency, Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst, Master Artist Residency, Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, Harvard University
1997, Computer Arts Fellowship, the New York Foundation for the Arts.
Awarded second prize and permanent collection, NTT[ICC] Biennale 1996, Moving Images Installation and Interactive Media Fellowship, the Rockefellor Foundation Artist-in-residency, Pop, Mass and Sub’, Banff Center for the Arts
1995, Installation grants, AT&T New Voice/New Vision, Walker Art Center
1994, Visual Artist Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts
1992-1993 Film/Video Fellowship, The Rockefellor Foundation
ITVS (Independent Television Service) and Channel Four, UK. Film production grants, New York State Council on the Arts; American Film Institute
Publication- Art and the Internet – Black dog publishing, 2014
Publication – ARTINVESTOR, 2013
Portrait : SHU LEA CHEANG’s interactive mythologies – published at Digitalarti, 2013
Publication “Portrait de lieux et d’artistes au travers de créations digitales” at Culture Mobile@rtek, written by Christine Treguier for Orange.fr., 2013
“Greening the Network Commons” by Armin Medosch at thenextlayer.org, 2013
MCD netart, 2013
Interview with Matthew Fuller, published at METAMUTE., 2012
MCD/Internet of things, Paris, 2011
MCD/digitali art, Paris, 2010
Move, Werkleitz festival, catelogue texts by Stephen Kovats, 2009
L’Impresa dell’Arte, catalog, 2008
Moving Forest, poptronics.fr, arte.fr. 2008
Visual Production, published in Shanghai, China 2007
Neural. It, interview, 2006
A minima, artist project, 2005
Jana, Reena & Tribe, Mark (editors), “Brandon”, New Media Art, Taschen, 2005
Greene, Rachel “ Burn”, Internet art 2004
Sans, Jerome, “Hardly Tender Softly Served, ” HARDCORE. Palais de Tokyo. 2003. Schneider, Julia,. “Get Garlic.Go Wireless, ” Springerin, Austria. December, 2002.
Gunn, Angela, “Dollars and Scents,” Time Out New York, September, 2002
Toshiki, Hoshino, “They Are Not “Neo-Hippies, ” Composite, Japan. Jan. 2002. Marcette, Gina, “ Cinema Frames, Videoscapes, and Cyberspace: Exploring Shu
Lea Cheang’s Fresh Kill, “ Duke University Press, 2001.
Perra, Daniele, “Focus On, .” Tema Celeste Comtemporary Art, May-June 2001.
Bosco, Roberta, “El digiporn de Shu Lea Cheang,” Barcelona Art Report 2001.
Rich, B.Ruby, “The I.K.U. Experience, The Shu Lea Cheang Phenomenon,”
Asian Cine Vision, Bailey, Andy, “Tokyo Porn, ” The Face, Vol 3, number 46, Nov, 2000 Chong, Annabel, “Laid Runner,” VIBE, November, 2000
Schonherr, Johannes. “Sex Art Aborigine, ” Fleshpot, Critical Vision, 2000
Chua, Lawrence, “An Odd Circuit,” Art Asia Pacific, Fall edition 2000.
Medosch, Armin, “Virtuelles Live-Gerichtsdrama, “ Telepolis.de, November 1999
Kroker, Arthur and Marilouise, “Web Delirium, The Okinawa Project, ”
Digital Delerium. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1997
Furlong, Lucinda. “Gender Bending, Works of Shu Lea Cheang, ” College Press,1996. Hanhardt, John. “Media Art Worlds: New Expressions in Film and Video, ” 1993
Carr, C. “In Carr, On Edge: Performance at the End of the Twentieth Century.,” Hanover, New Hamshire: Wesleyan University Press, pgs. 206 – 11, 1993.
Kotz, Liz. “Shu Lea Cheang at Exit Art, ” Art In America, Vol 81, January 1993,
p.106. Highs, Kathy and Cheang, Shu Lea, eds. “Shot/Reverse Shot, A Cross
Circuit Videologue, ” Felix, NYC. 1992.
Howell, John, ed. “Breakthroughs, Avant Garde Artists in Europe and America,” 1950-1990, Wexner Center for the Arts, New York: Rizzoli, 1991.
Recent Panels & Lectures
*Presenting MCD issue#76 at European Media Art Festival 2015 -IRONY IN MEDIA ART – SUBVERSIVE INTERVENTIONS
*Join the panel discussion on identities at refrag:glitch at Parsons, Paris, 2015
*Video dialogues and lecture presentation with FemTechNet at OCAD, Toronto, 2013
Art Create Change, OCAD, Toronto, 2012
*Presenting composting the net at Transmediale 2012
*Tech & Gender, medialab Prado, 2011
*Empyre forum on piracy, 2011
*LaptopsRus, conference, Reina Sofia Museum, Madrid, 2010
*”Let’s be professional !” (F**k Me!), Seminar at MACBA, Barcelona, 2009
* ‘UKI game’, workshop for game script development, La Casa Encendida, Madrid,2009 *L’art c’est le mix.’, Beaux Arts, Bourges, France, 2008
* “Reclaiming Spaces for Participation: Strategies for interfacing urban space and community media”, Mal au pixel seminar, Paris, 2008
*ISEA artist project review panel, Singapore edition, 2008
* “New cultural networks”, Stifo@Sandberg, Amsterdam, 2007
* “Migration, Empire, Transformation” UCLA mellon fellowships in the Humanities, 2007 * “Mapping the New Frontier” Sundance Film Festival, Utah 2007
* “OPEN and FREE” conference, SINICA, Taipei, Taiwan 2007
* “Sites and para-sites: networking art ” ICA, Node London 2006
* “Observatoire des nouveaux medias”, ENSBA, Paris 2006
* “Enfant Terrible”, LOST GENDER – The world after sexes, Hesse Art Academy, 2006
* “How I got fucked in Norway, snowed in Swiss, kissed in Paris and driven crazy by Babylove” Transgression panel, Transmediale 2006
*Fictional installation toward WiFitopia”, l’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des arts decorative, 2006
* “The Art and Politics of netporn”, panelist, Institute of network cultures, Amsterdam
* “Dated2030” and “BodyWorks”, Kodak lecture series, Ryerson University, Toronto, 2005 * New Media Fellowship review panel, Rockefellor Foundation, New York, 2005
* “Mobile connections’, panel,.Futuresonic 2004.
Agenda Website http://www.mauvaiscontact.info/
Project based website FLUIDØ http://fluidthemovie.com
Seeds underground http://seedsunderground.net/
Comoposting the city http://compostingthecity.mobi/
Composting the net http://www.compostingthenet.net
Baby Work http://babywork.biz/
Green Rush http://www.greenrush.net/
Moving Forest http://www.movingforest.net/
Kingdom of Piracy http://kop.kein.org
RUSH HOUR BURN http://kop.kein.org/burn
BUY ONE GET ONE http://www.ntticc.or.jp/HoME/