GINA PEYRAN TAN

Recent Works

Single Channel/ Stereo/19 mins

The Bloody Bleeding System

How does one talk about a subject that seem to have stonewalled? How has society become desensitized by these news- as nothing seem to improve the rampant unjustified conditions foreign domestic workers are constantly faced with? This is a class of mostly women who have been overworked and underpaid, with no fair remuneration or employment protection. Not to mention the risks of psychological fracture they will have to live with forever as they have been punished into isolation or subjected to verbal or/and physical abuses. Who is responsible? The hiring countries, the hirer, the originating country? Who can we trust with for the welfare of these workers- the system or the individual? Is it education that is lacking or regulating or enforcement?

The Bloody Bleeding System directly addresses the severity of the issue - abuses that has seen the public light and yet year after year, the abuses that has turn into serial torture remains. As it continues, one really need to ask questions, at which point did it became this inhumane? How much worse it has to get before every worker is treated fairly and equally? Ultimately, the only protection that can do justice to these group of workers in such precarious work environments must be regulated and enforced, as reality is evident that counting on the individual hasn't been working. The conversation around this issue bears repeating, as long as it takes for the system to be corrected and justified for these women. 

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 29 mins

pillwillwillpillpillwill 

The precarity of a world wide mental health crisis is on a short waitlist after the assault of climate disasters, Covid-19 pandemic and the economic crisis.  How prepared is the world for this? We have collectively contributed to these circumstances, and must come to undo them. Mental health care is far too costly around the world, the dispensation of psychiatric drugs without mitigating repercussions seem to be the best and quickest dispense on hand. Faced with the high treatment cost or a comprised efficacy of the pill, what other resource can one have? Is this disease our next population culling after Covid-19? For all the riches of capitalism, we leave mental health hanging at the edge of risk. With all the knowledge, information and stats of our century, is the unpreparedness going to be written into history as COVID-19 pandemic has? Pillwillwillpillpillwill is a personal music channelled visual mindscape of the depressed condition to initiate further discussions on the issues concerning mental health.

WHO Mental Health 2020 (excerpt)
The survey of 130 countries provides the first global data showing the devastating impact of COVID-19 on access to mental health services and underscores the urgent need for increased funding. WHO has previously highlighted the chronic underfunding of mental health: prior to the pandemic, countries were spending less than 2 per cent of their national health budgets on mental health, and struggling to meet their populations’ needs. Many people may be facing increased levels of alcohol and drug use, insomnia, and anxiety. Meanwhile, COVID-19 itself can lead to neurological and mental complications, such as delirium, agitation, and stroke. People with pre-existing mental, neurological or substance use disorders are also more vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 infection  ̶  they may stand a higher risk of severe outcomes and even death. 

The Science of Psychotherapy (excerpt)
The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is the cerebral cortex covering the front part of the frontal lobe. The basic activity of this brain region is considered to be orchestration of thoughts and actions in accordance with internal goals. The frontal lobes are an area vitally involved in executive functions such as concentration, organization, judgement, reasoning, decision-making, creativity, emotional regulation, social–relational abilities, and abstract thinking—in other words, all the functionality we rely on for healthy relationships with ourselves and others. In studies of the neural correlates of depression, it has been found that left PFC activity is underactive relative to right PFC activity. It seems that less access to the positive bias of the left PFC may make it more difficult for the depressed individual to engage in positive goal-oriented thought and behaviour. 

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 3 mins

NEW YEAR/ New Year

NEW YEAR created in 2017, was a sculpture that disintegrated with no material traces, save for the digital photo and video documentation. NEW YEAR, reworked toward the end of 2020 as "NEW YEAR/New Year", resurrected as a video, as a renaissance for survival given a pandemic year of 2020. After an avalanche of events, which went beyond our worse projections, enters an urgent call for rethinking every aspect of our existence, relationships and agency. In this moment of survival, "NEW YEAR/ New Year" reminds us of our inherent survival instincts in order to prepare for a whole new reality ahead of us. This final version of NEW YEAR digitally eternalises it.

Music and vocals by The Analog Girl.

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 5 mins

Dialetics 

A clean slate. A new dialectic. A discourse that arises out of neutrality without subjects. Emancipation of the feminine and masculine from its gendered narratives. Hardened and used , the body never lived its organic form- it's identity seems to belong elsewhere, never truly owned. Dialectics confronts as a way to revisit our tactile sense in identifying with it. Dialectics, in its binary and opposing sense, presents a certain concreteness that is slippery, subjective whilst remaining objectively visually veritable.

- Selected for The Room's Project (Paris) Video Screening in collaboration with LUX London, 2021

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 23 mins

Smart Cities: DYSTECHTOPIA 

In 2014, Singapore leaders set out with an ambitious plan to make Singapore a Smart Nation. As headlined in an article, "Singapore tops the list of cities that will spend most money on smart city projects..."(CIO.com). Along with this vision, the authorities of the various Government agencies have invested systematically in media communications for its public to announce this new master plan. Synonymous to Government campaigns popular since the 1970s, such conditioning models have seamlessly coalesced into the everyday environment, through the ruling party's ownership of mass media channels. 

As the machinations of technology continue to advance, the disciplinary panopticon has internalized self-regulating behavior and mass surveillance is the new rearview mirror of power. Smart Cities in their becoming are a worldwide phenomenon that seems impenetrable and as individuals navigate this new dystechtopia, have we come to intervene too late? 

SMART CITIES: DYSTECHTOPIA weaves a narrative that attempts to read beyond the message intended for the public by those in power, subverting promotional and publicity videos that are made by Singapore Government agencies and interviews with head of Governments from broadcast TV. Deconstructing these materials, renouncing didacticism, the essay work against the autocratic norm as practiced by the ruling party and instigates questions on advanced technological interventions.

- Selected for The Floating Project's (Hong Kong) D-Normal/V-Essay 2021 online video-zine (issue #03)

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 6 mins

LEMONS 

(Part 1 of III)

LEMONS is part of three videos made during the lockdown confinement as a result of Covid 19 pandemic. If ever, this is a time where every confined person becomes highly aware of their domestic space and evaluates this relationship to that of their physical environment and interpersonal circles. As the world enters into a moment of quiet solitude, is this moment of tension and fear productive for our contemplation? Has this unfortunate phenomenon become an enforced moment to evaluate our human intervention across the world? What were we thinking - separated from each other, in our supposedly safest environment? Caught between the bliss of quiet and solitude and torn apart by the news cycle, the silver linings of a wake up call and the destruction the virus hurls towards our humanity, the horror of its ability to transcend our physical bodies. Infiltrating into every aspect of our lives, the virus feeds on the febrile polarities that would drive the society into further chaos and divide.

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 4 mins

SQUEEZED

(Part II of III)

Violence, mayhem, urgency, ensues on the streets across the world. A CRY FOR JUSTICE: AN EXISTENTIAL CRISIS. Pre-Covid 19, our society seems plague with an insurmountable political, societal and climate emergencies - threatened by forces we can't control. Covid-19 pandemic worldwide enters Year 2020 penetrating further inwards into these layers of encroachment. We have reached our limit - our only remaining fight - revolt and rebel. "What is a rebel? A man who says no: but whose refusal does not imply a renunciation. He is also a man who says yes as soon as he begins to think for himself." Albert Camus, The Rebel. Camus continues "Rebellion, though apparently negative since it creates nothing, is profoundly positive in that it reveals the part of man which must always be defended". This video work is in solidarity with all the courageous and brave individuals who have taken to the streets for a collective humane voice. What does it take to be heard? To have rights? To be respected and be an individual collectively?

- Selected for The Filmmakers Cooperative (New York) "In Solidarity" Festival, 2020

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 15 mins

aIR

(Part III of III)

Where is a civilian's liberty located during a pandemic? Who decides? Is it in the hands of politicians? Scientists, who supposedly provides the most indisputable insights? The wider community at large for the greater good? These are the questions Gina attempts to underline as she documents a 15 day mandatory quarantine within a 15 minute long video. Set within 5-star hotel accommodations for its citizens, with all expenses paid by the Singapore Government, the essentially enforced confinement quarantine comes across as a generous offering. The luxurious experience is however accompanied by policies more connected with penal institutions: stepping out of the air-conditioned room for 5 minutes of fresh air is strictly prohibited; location monitoring is enforced by video call, location-sharing app and in person, for every individual above 12 years of age, a maximum of up to 5 times daily, to make sure no one escapes their heavily CCTV equipped habitation. A failure to comply with all quarantine restrictions could result in incarceration or a hefty fine of up to 5000€, or both. After 7 days of artificial air, within an 8 sqm space and constant surveillance, this supposedly luxurious quarantine becomes an onerous one, mentally and physically.

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 6 mins

DAIMON

go to Daimon

A text-base documentary that is a round up from science and technological websites that have written, discussed and extensively put out information regarding AI and/or the issues surrounding AI. Although these information are online, it is not directed for an individual and the impact it can make for all that comes into contact with A.I application. The attempt is to generate a video that debunks A.I myths, consider it's widespread use and highlights how damaging A.I bias can be. This video is then disseminated on Twitter, by an A.I signed off as Daimon- whose job is to do as trained, sending video to the relevant public. Daimon is also the first ever self sufficient A.I who lives on those who chooses to support him in this task (online at daimon.watch). The lack of regulation on AI is an issue that is as urgent as the climate crisis, especially so if one considers the rate of AI being implemented across major industries worldwide. Support this project's petition to the EU on A.I regulation here.

In collaboration with A.I Scientist Olivier Peyran.

- Selected for CICA Museum (South Korea) "Art Teleported Korea" conference, 2021

Single Channel/ Stereo/ 38 mins

thinking Color

Filmed during Shaftesbury Park Primary School in their annual Creative Week event, this moving visual tries to capture those moments, as teachers and students carve time aside to perform creativity. As the lens closes in and document, this single moment of attention, it allows a closer observation within an energetic and brisk environment in the creative act in an interaction between the one who teaches and the ones that receives.  Working in the background in an unscripted approach, there were no rehearsals or retakes resulting in a filming process that captures these developments authentically.  We see how these children understand their role in the performance of creation and their intellectual understanding towards creativity. 

- Part of Wandsworth Art Fringe Festival (London), 2020

Single channel, 5.1 Surround, 50 mins

Maid. Helper. Caregiver. Foreign Domestic Worker

This is what modern day colonisation looks like. As rich nations around the world tap into the low wage labor from neighbouring countries, what appears to be job opportunities have become evident that it mostly benefits the pay masters. Evidently it may be, these low wage workers continues to always being in compromised circumstances, a situation that no single individual would accept coming from a privileged position. This is a portrait of a single woman placed in that position, labelled with various titles, allowing society to forget who she really is. She is Lyn, from Philippines, she is a mother, she is a woman who "brings home the bacon", she has been away for more than a decade, absent from the day to day of her children's life, as she slogs at physical labor to ensure her children doesn't live their existence the way she has to. She pays a price- way more than she could have predicted, her youth, her body, crumbles into this job that offers limited freedom, individual participation, initiative, mundane repetition,  loneliness, a complete lack of goal and motivation. She waits, hardened, for the years to pass, for her finances to accumulate, for children's independence. We listen to Lyn here, because she has a voice in society. 

- Selected for Noorderlicht International Photography Festival: TAXED TO THE MAX (The Netherlands), 26th edition, 2019

- Selected for FTho Daytime TV (London), 2019

- Selected for CICA Museum Portrait Exhibition (South Korea), 2021

Five Channels/ Stereo/ 19 mins

Phenomenologically Love - a practice

A practice - of love, balance, pace, falling and rising, engagement, connecting to our emotive self. The four performers brings forward- strength, energy, freedom and love through their movements. A strength in order to contemplate, energy in order to practice, freedom to explore, love before neglect. And in these moments, just like the cicadas the muses sent to allure- immerse in song and poetry. Love, more than hope- "Phenomenologically love" considers love as an antidote to our turbulent and cacophonous period that is throttling onwards in an unfathomable speed.

Print 84 x 59 cm. interview excerpt, brackets, rubberband

Where it Progresses?

Society is always in progress. But which way does it go? What does that cost to an individual? This work was made for a work-in-progress show and this empty site holds promise as a work in progress. Who will this empty plot serve? As dense capital cities around the world are faced with increasing habitation, gentrification becomes the norm. Gentrification, capitalism, spreads its influence, gentrifying city centres  making affordable housing impossible pushing those who can't afford these to the edges. Living in London at the time of this work, Gina juxtapose an image of an empty plot of land against an excerpt of an interview from a fervent art collector, brandishing his infatuations with famous artists and his extensive art collection. Gentrification capitalism is placed beside the capitalist commodification of artworks as a self-criticism of being in the arts.

Single channel, Stereo, 7 mins

When

Presents pivotal moments of the artist’s parents as they grapple with old age and illnesses. Made after the passing of the Gina's father, it reflects on the period of illness before one succumbs to death and the last memories that remains for the living. The video portrays the 3 generations within the family as a passage of time as it bears witness to these final events of deterioration from time which eventually leads to death.

Transparency, audio track, QR code

this is not the work i intended for my degree show

An open letter published at  her graduate show for the administration of Royal College of Art (London).

Scan barcode on screen to listen to audio track.

OLDER WORKS

THE OTHERS

© Copyright Gina Peyran Tan