Now space
June 01 - June 25, 2023
Opening reception: June 03, 7PM - 9PM

Embodiment is Leiya Wang’s first solo show. The New York City-based photographer was born and raised in Tainan, Taiwan, and earned their degree in photography from the School of Visual Arts in the spring of 2023. This exhibition is a culmination of their recent work.

Leiya’s photographs are characterized by truncated bodies weaving faceless in and out of their frames, and our gaze is led to their parts. A bare breast is scored with a series of scratches, and a man’s penis is tethered into submission by a cord. Printed at a relatively small scale, lovingly matted, and framed, we’re allowed a window into these contrarily brutal performances that Leiya orchestrates with silent care and attraction. In a four-minute video piece, shot with the uniquely distorted monochrome Pixelvision camera, the frame alternates amongst two bodies that lay prone, writhing as they become simultaneously mutilated and aroused.

Significantly, other organic evidence of torture and pleasure includes blood, cum, and vomit. Printing on paper with a metallic finish, these bodily fluids appear hyperreal as they shimmer on the skin of these subjects. The artist forgoes traditional black-and-white tone, allowing for a greenish hue to permeate the paper. A signifier of Leiya’s vivid memory and color-specific association with the memories of traumatic events.

Taking cues from Viennese actionism, these photographs are reactionary as well as cathartic, responding to an unspeakable trauma that is implied through this sequence of metaphorical imagery.


(Text by Tyler Frigge)
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