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/ Ivetta Sunyoung Kang

Ivetta Sunyoung Kang

Tenderhands is a series of instructions handwritten on post-its on daily basis, which I have been practicing since the global lockdown. I sit at the table and imagine how to “ease” the anxiety of hands and body in poetic and somatic ways that resonate with what I have done and observed mostly at my home and sometimes outside while practicing social distancing. This process is usually actualized in ten to twenty minutes and written on a small memo-pad (Post-it) made of recycled paper to function as both an instruction and a poem.

This project requires constant writing practices and a biopolitical understanding in different concepts of hands–hands of oneself, strangers, and beloved ones. All instructions are delineated in irrational yet poetic writings to be against the fact that instructions are generally supposed to be straightforward and precise. Thus, the two contrasting aspects of this practice – the concrete and the abstract – simultaneously mingle in a medium of instruction for the overarching concept—the anxiety of public and private hands.


I’m a South Korean born interdisciplinary artist based in Montreal and Toronto. I studied Film Directing in South Korea and obtained my BFA in 2011. In 2012, I moved to Canada and studied the MFA program at Concordia. I received my MFA degree in 2016. Since my graduation, I have been working as an artist and writer based in Canada. My practice is concerned with cinematic thinking, video installations, text, and performative/participatory work that propose future-oriented and reparative perception and movement. My work attempts to ease mental disorders exacerbated by the dominant life model in excessive urbanism and post-colonialism. I examine the typical patterns of everyday objects, human behaviors, and relationships with the surroundings until their subversions in social contexts and usages become poetically therapeutic. I have internationally presented her work at film festivals and galleries, including Jeon-Ju International Film Festival, Leonard Bina Ellen Gallery, M.A.I, SomoS Art House, Arlington Arts Center, etc. In 2016, I was shortlisted for the Simon Blais Award in Canada. I have recently self-published a poetry collection entitled Absent Seats.


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