MALAM / NIGHT
Grace Tjang (Grace Ellen Barkey) / NeedcompanyWorld premiere
Inspired both by her ancestors and the Javanese theatre of shadows wayang, Grace Ellen Barkey, who was born in Surabaya, Indonesia, enters into a nightly dialogue with the obscure and searches for forms of re-imagination in her installative performance ‘MALAM / NIGHT’.
7 to 17 October 2021
Access subject to availability
Thursday, 7 & Friday, 8 October.2021, 16:00–24:00
Tuesday, 12 to Friday, 15 October 2021, 16:00–24:00
Saturday, 9 & 16 October 2021, 14:00–24:00
Sunday, 10 & 17 October 2021,14:00–23:00
Included in the event ticket
“For years, I’ve been looking at the plants in my garden at night. The structures, the light of the street lantern or the moon, the shadows, the mysterious glittering when it has rained. I looked so much that the structures became mine. In the Wayang puppet play, you can see the same organic forms and the play with light and shadow. I am the Wayang player, the Dhalang. I am creating the night of my observation and imagination but also the night from my memories and my parental heritage. Going deeper in the layers of the night, I honour my history, the stories of my parents, grandparents, ancestors. Every story in my family hides the whole colonial history and its wounds. It is striking that in the colonial history women are used and then put aside, forgotten. I decided that, for this project, I will decolonize my name and use the name of my grandmother.” (Grace Tjang, May 2021)
Grace Tjang began her project “MALAM / NIGHT” by filming her garden at night. Inspired by Javanese wayang puppet theatre, whose name literally means “shadows” or “ghosts”, individual images of plants, shadows and light drawings each come to life in a way of their own.. The first recorded reference to shadow theatre can be found in the ancient Javanese kakawin poem entitled “Arjunawiwaha” (dated between 1028 and 1035). As in Tjang’s obscure universe, attention is focused on the puppeteer – who acts as a dalang, breathing life into the figures and inviting the audience to question their own perceptions.
A project organised by the programme series Immersion.
Installation, drawings, costumes and performance Grace Tjang
Videos Grace Tjang except "Deer" in collaboration with Emma van der Put
Sound installation “Imaginary landscapes” Rombout Willems
Technical direction Ken Hioco
Technical coordination Koen De Saeger
Production management Marjolein Demey
Outside eye Emma van der Put
Artistic assistance Kasia Tórz