A Son Is The Dad’s Lovers
From A Past Life


a)  Pine wood sheets (12 mm) with laser engraved flowers, wooden dowel rods (Ø 2mm), rubber plungers
b)  174x16x16 & 168x16x16 (cm)
c)  2020

“A daughter is her father’s lover from a past life,” is a Chinese proverb, drawing a parallel between the intensity of a father’s love for his daughter to the affection in a lovers’ romance, love that continues beyond a lifetime.

However selfless the affection, the implication of reincarnation, or family ethics might be, the metaphor of lovers’ image is an over romanticism based on the male gaze. Together with gender stereotypes (the assumption of sexual orienta- tion and gender role of a daughter), the fallacy of the erotic subject, the patriar- chal ideology from a broader societal context is insinuated to the domestic.

“A Son Is the Dad’s Lover from A Past Life” is an attempt to shift the attention to a relatively ignored yet tensioned autobiographical father-son relationship. By utilising the measurement of the bodies of my father’s and mine as a frame, the two one-way parallels are facing the compatible direction, endlessly enclosing, containing by themselves, yet failing to meet each other.

The columns, the bones, or the exaggerated handles reach down through the passages of floral patterns - the symbol of (homo)sexual organs - [1], sitting on the ineffective household dredging objects. The repetition of the materials and anomaly of the chests respond to the generational gaps, both in linguistic symbolic and sexual context, namely the latent messages of sexism and patriarchal structure in our society, which continuously permeate individual gender identity and unbalance the domestic relationship, and gender roles.

[1] “Chrysanthemum” and “chrysanthemum gate” are both slang and jocular appellation for the male anus and gay sex in Chinese and Japanese. They are named after the appearance of radial stripes of an external sphincter muscle of the anus, resembling a blossomy chrysanthemum.

A Son Is The Dad’s Lover From A Past Life is an installation presented under a group exhibition, Work the Muscle, at the Galleri Seiduken in Oslo, Norway.

Exhibitors consist
of nine artists from the Oslo National Academy of the Arts. The exhibition is accompanied by an event presenting a collective choir.

ARTISTSAna Marques Engh, Bobby Yu Shuk Pui, Emil Kjærnli, Emilia Sølvsten, Fanny Fermelin, Jacky Jaan-Yuan Kuo, Sara Liv Hermansson, Signe Greve Persson, Solveig Ylva Dagsdottir

PRESS RELEASE We would like to invite you all for a work-out session in company with Maryam Jafri's muscle-workers from last year's group crit (2019-2020). Displaying developed works from collective gym-sessions with the one and only Maryam Jafri. [Text by Emilia Sølvsten]