Pixy Liao, How to build a relationship with layered meanings, 2008, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Hush, Baby, 2010, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Relationship work best when each partner knows their proper place, 2008, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, You don't have to be a boy to be my boyfriend, 2010, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, The Hug by the Pond, 2010, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

. Pixy Liao, Japanese Room II, 2015, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Some words are just between us, 2011, photography, 75 x 100cm. Courtesy of the artist.

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Pixy Liao, How to build a relationship with layered meanings, 2008, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Hush, Baby, 2010, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Relationship work best when each partner knows their proper place, 2008, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, You don't have to be a boy to be my boyfriend, 2010, photography, 100 x 75 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, The Hug by the Pond, 2010, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

. Pixy Liao, Japanese Room II, 2015, photography, 75 x 100 cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Pixy Liao, Some words are just between us, 2011, photography, 75 x 100cm. Courtesy of the artist.

Selected

Experimental Relationship (for your eyes only, or maybe mine, too)

Brooklyn-based artist Pixy Liao’s ongoing project, Experimental Relationship, dwells on sociocultural tendencies, power plays, and emotional sustenance by examining the dynamics of her personal, romantic relationship, performed with photography and print matter. Since 2007, the Chinese-born artist has staged photographs and live performances with her Japanese boyfriend, Moro, in keen attempts to balance, reverse, or subvert cultural traditions and gendered behaviours in a seemingly tongue-in-cheek, yet graceful manner. The sometimes-surreal images created throughout the process signal some of the traditional values and views of intimacy that are dictating interactions between the two lovers; they also point to a broader context in which gender dynamics and gendered expectations are questioned: Who is leading the relationship, who has the deciding voice in decision-making, and who is gazing? Pixy and Moro’s relationship, in a way activated (not documented) by the project, has also been growing with it.

Accompanying the photographic works and acting as an extension of Experimental Relationship in the exhibition is Pimo Dictionary, a collection of hybrids of Chinese, Japanese, and English words and phrases, as well as slang, which was inspired by Pixy and Moro’s communication barriers.

This exhibition at Centre A also provides a rare platform to discuss intricacies of romance, sex, and desire within a culturally specific framework, against the Western backdrop of the fetishization of Asian women and the denial of Asian masculinity.

This exhibition is Pixy Liao’s first exhibition in Canada and will include new works of the Experimental Relationship series from 2019 and 2020.

Supported by a Tricera Printing Grant.

This exhibition contains work that may not be suitable for some viewers.

 

 

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