Between October – November 2022 Dr Vivian K. Sheng is Visiting Global Fellow in the School of Art History at the University of St Andrews, during which time she is affiliated with the St Andrews Centre for Contemporary Art. Below Vivian gives an overview of the research she will be working on while at St Andrews for the CCA blog.
My name is Vivian Sheng. I am an Assistant Professor in contemporary transnational art at the Department of Art History, The University of Hong Kong. In fall 2022, I am a visiting global fellow hosted by the School of Art History, University of St Andrews.
During my stay, I will be working on finalising the manuscript of my first monograph book titled Women, Arts and Fantasies of ‘Homemaking’: Affective Domesticity, Embodied Inhabitation and Transnational (Dis)identification, which lays out resonating, but individually distinct chapters centring around deliberately chosen images, objects and installations created and presented by four women artists—Yin Xiuzhen, Fiona Tan, Shen Yuan and Nikki S. Lee in multiple places across the world in the 1990s and 2000s. While there are apparent differences in their artistic formats, and their personal and professional experiences of travel and migration, the works of these women artists, I suggest, articulate fantasies of ‘homemaking’ predicated on nuanced appropriation and adaption of quotidian domestic items and activities, which engender intimate relationships with/in diverse local living situations, providing a distinctive insight into the increased cross-border circulation of labour, commodities, services, images, information and discourses.
I will give a talk relating to my book in October 2022, which will continue the conversation from a previous online research seminar lecture—Fiona Tan: Inhabiting the World as a ‘Professional Foreigner’ delivered in March 2022. Meanwhile, I will also be working with Dr Catherine Spencer to organise a few events. One of them will be an Artist Talk on 3 November given by London-based Chinese artist Yushi Li, co-hosted by St Andrews Centre for Contemporary Art, the School of Art History and the Museums, Galleries and Collections Institute (MGCI).