Para Site presents "While we are embattled" marking the seventh edition of its annual Emerging Curators exhibition



Para Site presents "While we are embattled" curated by Nomaduma Rosa Masilela and Thiago de Paula Souza. The exhibition brings together works by Noor Abed, Morehshin Allahyari, Castiel Vitorino Brasileiro, Sara Haq, Junghun Kim, Carolyn Lazard, Sabelo Mlangeni, Jota Mombaça, Avery Z. Nelson, Temitayo Ogunbiyi, and a newly commissioned reading room presented by Contemporary And (C&) with a selection of materials from the Asia Art Archive Library Collection.

Leveraging the questions posed and actions adopted by Black women artists and feminists, as well as practices related to Black radical theory, the curators confront and imagine the possibilities to reconnect, re-narrate, and regenerate ourselves with the physical and virtual spaces we occupy. The exhibition places the work and theories of Black radical praxis in the context of Hong Kong, elaborating on their implications and parallels around the world and examining questions of safety and retreat as generative modes of engagement, protection, and survival. In the face of a global pandemic and uprisings around the world related to racial inequalities, political violence, and ecological crisis, the exhibition emerges as an ongoing inquiry by the curators into the many impediments we face today, not only in connecting with one another, but also in suggesting a ground for future engagement and solidarity: what happens in this in-between state, which we currently find ourselves in, and what happens at this point of meeting during overlapping and ongoing periods of embattlement?

The exhibition is part of a larger, ongoing research project and collaboration between Masilela and de Paula Souza, which revolves around the question posed by the American poet-activist Audre Lorde: ‘How do we learn to love each other while we are embattled on so many fronts?’ The exhibition title takes the form of the conjunctive clause to this overarching question, existing within an intermediate state of being, which is reflected in the exhibition design by Human Architects. Moving between generative and chaotic states, the exhibition offers a possibility for alignment through the convening of ten international artists and practitioners in conjunction with a reading room newly created for Para Site in collaboration with the C& Center of Unfinished Business and Asia Art Archive and other local collaborators. The exhibition engages the audience in the politics of affection, reminding us of the possibilities to come together to discover and release latent powers and tensions during desperate circumstances.

About the curators
Nomaduma Rosa Masilela is an artist, curator, and writer. Her work and interests focus on collective work and strategy; public and performance art; ideas of the uncanny, the absurd, the dissonant; and the ambivalent natures of authenticity, history, and identity production. She received an MA in art history and philosophy from Columbia University, New York in 2013. Her curatorial practice includes exhibitions and projects with Rijksakademie, Amsterdam (2019), the 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art (2018), and the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2015–2016). She currently commits her writing and curatorial practice to critically supporting the work of queer and femme-identifying artists from the global south and its diasporas.

Thiago de Paula Souza is a curator and educator interested in configurations of knowledge and power that enable contradictions as well as in art and education's ability to re-elaborate the past and produce new ethical codes that help us imagine a world where violence is no longer its foundation. He co-curated the 3rd edition of Frestas—Triennial of Arts, São Paulo (2020–2021), participated in the Post-academic Fellowship Program at Basis Voor Actuele Kunst (BAK) (2018–2019), and served on the curatorial team of the 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art (2018). He is currently a PhD candidate at HDK-Valand at the University of Gothenburg and a curatorial advisor for the 58th Carnegie International.

Masilela and de Paula Souza began their curatorial collaboration at the 10th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art (2018).

About the exhibition

Dates: Oct 2 – Nov 20

Venue: Para Site

Address: 22/F, Wing Wah Industrial Bldg. 677 King's Road, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong

Courtesy of Para Site.