Tuan Andrew Nguyen, The Unburied Sounds of a Troubled Horizon, 2022 (still). © Tuan Andrew Nguyen 2023. Courtesy the artist and James Cohan, New York
The New Museum presents a screening of Tuan Andrew Nguyen’s film, The Unburied Sounds of a Troubled Horizon (2022), in the New Museum Theater.
Featured in the exhibition “Tuan Andrew Nguyen: Radiant Remembrance,” Unburied Sounds exemplifies how Nguyen reworks dominant narratives through personal memory, the historical charge of objects, and speculative or spiritual practices. Set in Quảng Trị, a heavily bombarded area during the war in Vietnam, the film follows a woman named Nguyêt who runs a scrapyard business and builds beautiful hanging sculptures from the remnants of munitions and unexploded ordnances. With the help of a spiritual medium and monks, Nguyêt realizes that she is the reincarnation of Alexander Calder (1898—1976), the American sculptor and an outspoken critic of the Vietnam War. In this film, Nguyen questions how the idea of reincarnation and the reappearance of an artistic impulse in another time, place, and individual might destabilize the way we think about progress in art and history.
Screenings will take place every hour, beginning at 11 a.m. The last screening begins at 4 p.m. Access to the New Museum Theater is included with general admission.
Tuan Andrew Nguyen (b. 1976, Saigon, Vietnam; he/him) is an artist whose work utilizes strategies of remembrance to highlight unofficial and suppressed histories. Interweaving the factual and the speculative and often employing mythologies of otherworldly realms, Nguyen’s films re-work dominant narratives into stories that propose creative forms of healing the intergenerational traumas of colonialism, war, and displacement. Through his interest in animism and material memory—the affective and historical charge embedded into objects—Nguyen’s installations and sculptural practice coincide with and expand on the themes explored in his films.
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