Sep 16, 2006

Performance, Installation


Grand Luxe Hall, Western Front


8:00 p.m.


Mediamorphosis was an installation and performance by David Khang, with accompaniment by pianist Jason de Couto. The work reinterprets La Monte Young’s score Compositions 1960 #5 (1960), which involves releasing a butterfly into the performance space.
Khang’s performance unfolded at the centre of a cube made from suspended white mesh. Three forms shrouded in a similar material were gradually unwrapped, revealing plinths stacked with a cow tongue in a dish, a terrarium of monarch butterflies, and a large hollowed out book. The performance also involved Khang injecting anesthesia into his mouth before piercing his tongue with a sewing needle. Khang recorded his actions within the cube with a camcorder positioned on a tripod. 

Mediamorphosis concluded with Khang wrapping himself in the discarded mesh and suspending himself upside down—mirroring the form of a butterfly in a chrysalis. Within this work, layers of event time and screen space expand, complicating such binaries as “nature/culture,” and “past/present” to examine representations of transformation and translation. 

Presented in partnership with New Forms Festival.

Curated by Joanne Bristol.

Video documentation available upon request.

Related People

Western Front is a non-profit
artist-run centre in Vancouver.

We acknowledge the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ílwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations as traditional owners of the land upon which Western Front stands.