Friday 2 & 23 September 2022, 5pm – 8pm
Monday 29 August – Sunday 25 September 2022
Sap 濕 by musician and interdisciplinary Chun Yin Rainbow Chan 陳雋然, is an audio-visual installation designed in the digital and replicated in the physical. The work contemplates the intimate ties between love songs, cultural memory, and identity formation.
Sap 濕 draws upon recollections of Rainbow’s childhood after migrating to Australia with her family in 1996. It also pays homage to the legendary Taiwanese singer Teresa Teng. A feeling of temporal displacement pervades Sap 濕, haunted by a desire to belong to a past and future that never existed.
Sap 濕 by musician and interdisciplinary Chun Yin Rainbow Chan 陳雋然, interrogates the tensions between identity, sound and place. Through repetition and degradation, Rainbow traverses the borders of meaning in her own family history and in the cultural legacy of Teresa Teng.
Repurposing Teng’s bittersweet lyrics, Rainbow uses the pull of nostalgia to illuminate the diasporic psyche. Fragments of Teresa Teng’s ballads are sonically manipulated and repeated ad nauseam. The short loops have been pitched, stretched and processed using feedback and resonance which distort the music’s sense of time and space. These loops will emanate from multiple speakers, individually encased by 3D printed objects which have a blob-like quality. Created from warped karaoke subtitles, the blobs are reminiscent of tear drops and sap.
Behind the sounding objects is the soft glow of a neon sign, its text echoing the distorted lyrics. Neon is both a nod to the changing urban landscape of Hong Kong, once defined by its neon lights, and Rainbow’s now-closed family restaurant, a local Chinese takeaway in Sydney’s suburbia. For Rainbow, it symbolises ephemerality.
Against this backdrop, the audience is invited to walk around the space and put their ear close to the sounding blobs. As the fragments repeat, different musical elements drift in and out of one’s awareness. Seemingly sappy love songs transform into a hypnotically “out-of-time” environment.
Sap 濕 is commissioned and produced by Campbelltown Arts Centre as part of BLEED 2022.