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Wandering Landscape. Resiency by Wei Yang / January - March 2024
Idensitat + Consorci de Museus de la Comunitat Valenciana 

Wandering Landscape / Wei Yang

Wandering Landscape aims to focus on the experiences of the Chinese diaspora in València, Spain, as it is the first city in Spain that has a Chinatown. Through photography, oral history, archives, and material reconstructions, the project will examine the intersection of geopolitical relationships and the theme of intimacy, belonging and sense of relative lag in time as a new possibility which became an activation of their existence and representation against the silent cultural assimilation.

As València was one of the first cities for the Chinese diasporic community to immigrate to Spain, its melancholic urban development remains in certain areas, along with cultural landscapes and nostalgic memories, makes me feel familiar with and curious about this city at the same time. During my residency, I plan to capture customs, sensory experiences, language through exploring the city, and conduct on-site research on materials, juxtapose reflections on the de-accelerated and subtle domesticity, to formalize the initial archive of my residency experience.

Open Studio, 22 March 2024 / CCCC

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Coordination and support: Roser Colomar Palazón
Texts: Wei Yang and Roser Colomar Palazón
Spacial Thanks:
Susana Ye, Runxin Zhou, Hu Zhao, Ya Hui, Roser Colomar, Stephen Michetti, Rebeca Granero, Patricia Ferragud, Javier Lo-
rente Puchades, Luis San Gregorio, Empar Polanco, Zishi Han, Kaleidoscopifilmlab, CCCC mediation and communication team
Photos: Juan Peiró

First phase of residence: from January 2 to 15. / Exploration and mapping

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Starting the day with a zongzi, a sticky rice delicacy wrapped in reed leaves, and a baobao at Tian Tian Da Rou Bao, one is immediately transported to a familiarity. The restaurant's name, a direct phonetic translation from Chinese pinyin, stands out amidst the Spanish cityscape, and architecture. 
As I pass by Electronic Yongfeng, it's hard not to notice the array of goods, a vibrant mix that seems to be gearing up for the upcoming Spring Festival. Or perhaps, they are leftovers from previous years, a blend of the old and new, a common theme in this ever-evolving wonderland. Following a snack truck, laden with goods towering over its carrier, it might seem unusual, childish, even playful to an outsider, but here, it represents the daily grind, the hustle of those who run these businesses.
In the backdrop, the train station looms, a symbol of constant movement and change, much like the Chinatown itself.
Walking on the streets, the sense of time travel becomes more profound. On one hand, there’s a visible effort to merge with the local culture, evidenced by shops adopting Spanish names. On the other, there’s a palpable preservation of the past, reflecting trends and styles from a different era. The Chinese names of the barbershops, for instance, translate to 'Western Styles and Fashion’, but in Spanish, it says Carolina’s hair salon. This duality is most apparent when I stand in front of Felisano Home. The name, possibly a play on English ‘feels like home', or Feliciano [fe-li-ciano], which means happiness and luck, highlights the transition of the Chinese version. It's a place where the desire of belonging and the assimilation coexist, where food and images intertwine, where every street corner tells a story of the moving, the adapting and the enduring spirit of families in a new world, since 2005. 


Second residency phase: from February 15 to March 31 / research and activations
The research will continue in a second phase with a series of interviews, contacts, and conversations with neighbours of Chinese origin, in order to address issues of identity and belonging. This second phase starts the residency process with activities engaging with Wei's practice. 

Thursday 29 February 2024 at 6.30pm in Space D (CCCC, Carrer Museu 2, Valencia)
This meeting is conceived as a moment of open conversation with the artist, designed to connect with residency processes and artists from other territories, to learn about the artist's trajectory, his practice and the project he will carry out in this residence.

Sunday 18th of Februrary 2024
The first activity was the performance Hairpin Beneath, at the POLS artistic space (València), which took place on February 18th.
Emerging from Zishi Han and Wei Yang’s ongoing collaborative research project into historical Chinese homoerotic literature, Hairpin Beneath is an evolving performance that intertwines multiple narratives to explore queer existences in China and the Chinese diaspora. The point of their departure is a Ming dynasty anthology of homoerotic stories, ‘弁而釵’ (‘Biàn ér chāi’). The title of the book implies the scene of a man taking off his ceremonial headgear and putting on a woman's hairpin. Structured around a set of excerpts from the book, they loosely interpret its storylines and draw on a variety of Chinese historical and contemporary cultural practices, such as poetry, Chinese Opera, literati landscape painting, Danmei literature, pop music and reality TV shows.

Oscillating between live reading and video projection, they assemble formally distinct but correlating components of the performance to dwell amidst the blurry boundary between the fictional and the biographical. Live reading texts are drawn from ‘Biàn ér chāi’ (bai hua version), translated into written vernacular Chinese by 执迷 (Zh. m.), published in instalments on 书香门第 (Shū xiāng m.n d.). Excerpts are edited and translated into English by Zishi Han and Wei Yang.

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Zishi Han (b. Beijing, lives and works in Frankfurt am Main) probes masochistic attachment to power structures through installation, sculpture, video and drawing. Drawn to forms that hold and let through, he constructs possessed and perverted apparatuses to dismantle previous relations and incubate unexplored desires.

Wei Yang (b. Liuzhou, lives and works in Frankfurt am Main) explores human beings as a geographic subject in diasporic spaces. He layers collective memories to create hybrid images through myths, history and personal landscapes, which serve as sites of resistance against grand narratives and archival neglect.