[Online Exhibition] SENSE N’ REACT TO THE DROP

3301 W Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90018
Jul 20, 12 AM - 12 AM — ends Aug 02, 2020
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In collaboration with Visitor Welcome Center, guest curated by David L Bell, Ochi Projects is pleased to present sense n' react to the drop, a group exhibition featuring Sonia Louise Davis & Ivan Forde, Joeun Aatchim Kim, iris yirei hu and Paula Wilson. The exhibition will be featured in our online viewing room from July 13 - August 1, 2020.

Different species of ants across the world have developed survival tactics to save their communities. While ants may not be able to predict the weather, ants have proven to be able to evince their readiness for storms. For instance, in order to survive a storm and ensure the safety of their queen and larvae, an entire colony of fire ants will assemble together to form a raft to float atop water until dry land is reached. In heavy rain, these ants will find a vertical stem or branch upon which they will form a column, allowing raindrops to glide the surfaces of their conjoined backs without washing them away.

Through touch and smell, ants are able to sense the changes in their immediate vicinity, and have developed abilities to pivot, prepare, and improvise to reorient themselves towards survival. Their antennae gives them their sense of smell, and thus ants can follow trails, sojourn for food, and recognize their own colony. A colony of ants has a collective brain as large as many mammals. Sense n react to the drop is derived from the collaborative survival skills that ants have practiced for 148 million years.

Sense n react to the drop brings together five artists: Sonia Louise Davis & Ivan Forde of Harlem, New York, Joeun Aatchim Kim of New York City, Los Angeles based iris yirei hu and Paula Wilson of Carrizozo, New Mexico. Visitor Welcome Center is both an experimental platform ran in the style of an artist-run space and an emergent practice that has dedicated itself to artists whose truths are often eclipsed by the mainstream, whose foils include constructs other than whiteness, and whose stories are actively being written and difficult to tell. This exhibition includes a selection of artists that Visitor Welcome Center has worked with and supported, and the online platform is a glimpse into the more tangible and collaborative possibilities that VWC seeks to build.

The exhibition begins with a commitment to study and reflection and worlds into being our kinship with the natural world and one another. At a time when the majority of the world is isolated in distance, Joeun Aatchim’s pieces reflect a yearning for contact and closeness. The disembodied voice of the narrator in Foolish manifesto of the freedom of houseplants remakes herself in a figure whose back is turned away from her viewers in New Song. Wilson’s Spread is a reflexive depiction of the act of close looking and the study of interspecies regeneration between an orchid and a moth. The reality of interspecies procreation offers a speculative possibility upon which to experience the world and one another. hu’s mutant theory takes off from Wilson’s speculation, and supposes that one can remake the world through mythic realism. Caught in between two hands that cannot touch, a mythical moth transforms itself to the playful love between partners Sonia Louise Davis and Ivan Forde in the way and the light. Joy entangles the two, whose collaborative dance thrives from an improvised response to one another’s movements. Blindfolded, Forde responds to Davis’ calls in optimism and trust, and without hesitation, the sun, the sky, and the lake openly cradle their love.

Inspired by ants and their insistence on collaboration for survival, Sense n react to the drop is a creative score put together by artists whose slow and reflective practices deepen this shared moment of transformation.

— Visitor Welcome Center, July 2020