The exhibition “Fantasy in Movement” argues for an understanding of mythology as way more than shared fiction; the collection of screen-based works on view acknowledges folklore as a subterranean catalyst for historic and social shifts. Thao-Nguyen Phan’s Tropical Siesta, 2017, options highland youngsters reenacting tales from a seventeenth-century French missionary’s diary as a method of puncturing the veil cloaking sure histories (notably, that of the tumultuous land reform in Vietnam within the Nineteen Fifties). Interspersed with parts of play and superimposed drawings, Phan’s moving-image renders these suppressed narratives porous and poetic. In The Lonely Age, 2019, Connie Zheng initiatives into the close to future, conjuring a postapocalyptic world the place Californians are desperately foraging for doubtlessly healing (and maybe even sentient?) seeds which have drifted throughout the ocean from China. Alternating between the collective performances of a face-masked search group and the enigmatic actions of a shrouded entity, Zheng’s video questions whether or not humanity’s curiosity in spirituality can salvage our decimated planet.
The speculative perform of mythology turns into the thread that binds the works collectively. Martha Atienza’s Adlaw sa mga Mananagat (Fisherfolk’s Day), 2022, juxtaposes an unlimited nonetheless horizon with a semi-ritualistic boat procession bobbing alongside the waves. Shot in gradual movement, this screen-based evocation is the end result of Atienza’s durational engagement with the fishing neighborhood of Bantayan Island within the Philippines. By enshrouding the occasion in a dreamlike atmosphere, Atienza subtly lends her voice to their collective battle.