iris yirei hu

Survival Guide: inheritance
On view March 24–April 27, 2018
presented by artist-in-residence iris yirei hu

Opening Reception: March 23, 7-10pm
Closing Reception: April 27, 7-10pm

Women’s Center for Creative Work presents Survival Guide: inheritance, an immersive installation by iris yirei hu made in residence during our “Health/Care” quarter.

Survival Guide: inheritance continues hu’s ongoing practice of constructing installations based on allegorical survival guides (Survival Guide: joy, 2017 and Survival Guide: when the Sun devours the Moon, 2017). Following the aftermath of the Sun devouring the Moon, hu turns to weaving as the necessary next step of a practice addressing the care and legacy of inherited traditions. In a room coated in golden milk, two large paintings tell the story of the artist apprenticing with fourth-generation Navajo weaver Melissa Cody of No Water Mesa, Arizona and Zapotec weavers Porfirio Gutiérrez y familia of Teotitlán del Valle in Oaxaca, Mexico. For hu, weaving is a process that depends on the individual and the collective to make an image and tell a story; it is the past, present, and future.

Inspired by her rug weaving journey, hu invited eight artists to contribute to a floor piece entitled “Magic Carpet” specifically made for WCCW. Brought together from New York, New Mexico, and California, and made from a diverse array of materials, the “Magic Carpet” brings hu’s intergenerational world together and illuminates the expansiveness of collective care. Weaving together stories of her family and friends, as well as ones unknown to her, Survival Guide: inheritance is a codex left behind by the Moon in preparation for us to share life with tenderness and tough love.

“Magic Carpet” features floor pieces made by Cynthia Alberto and her daughter Kaya Fridman; David Bell and his mother Carole Bell; Sonia Louise Davis and her mother Jill Heller; Sarita Dougherty, her partner champoy, and their daughter Lidagat Luna Dougherty Lim; Jeanne Hoel; laub and marbles; Jane Leese and her daughter Ann Leese; and Paula Wilson.

Survival Guide: inheritance is dedicated to hu’s mother and grandmothers, Melody, Ama, and Grandmother Dragon, as well as Hitomi Mochidome, mother of the late poet emi kuriyama.

iris yirei hu is an intergenerational storyteller and image maker. She uses painting, sound, poetry, and installation to rearrange habits of sharing time and making life. Her art, pedagogical, and curatorial projects explore the shifting possibilities of love in relation to systemic and institutional power. Selected solo exhibitions include: survival guide: when the Sun devours the Moon, Lenfest Center for the Arts, NY (2017); survival guide: joy, Visitor Welcome Center, Los Angeles (2017); Con/Safos with Rafa Esparza & Clockshop (2015). Her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, CNN, Sinovision, and KCET. She holds an MFA in Visual Art from Columbia University in the City of New York, BA from UCLA, and is a 2016 Paul & Daisy Soros New American Fellow.

Events & Workshops

Animal Medicine Readings
Presented by Michelle Antonisse & iris yirei hu
8 sessions available each Tuesday in April:
April 3, April 10, April 17, April 24, 5:30–9:30pm
Donation-based cost / RSVP Required

Join artist Michelle Antonisse inside the installation space of artist in residence iris yirei hu for a personal Animal Medicine Card reading. These readings resemble those of Tarot, but use the symbolism of animals within myriad Native American mythologies. Enforced by the physical space we will occupy, this practice aims to reflect processes of teaching, learning, and maintaining a connectivity to the natural world while existing within a social one. Like many medicines, the process of reading these cards is one of healing and not necessarily comfort. You may expect the cards to reflect patterns and spiritual identities, but not necessarily to predict outcomes or to to provide traditional advice. Instead, the two card spread that will be used is intended to ground the participant, to help them listen to the father and mother within, and to reconcile the actions of exterior identities with an interior self. Please come 10-15 minutes early to prepare for the experience with a short reading and worksheet.

More info here. 

Survival Guide: poetry
Thursday, April 12, 7-10pm
Hosted by iris yirei hu
Free / RSVP here

Health/Care artist-in-residence iris yirei hu hosts Amanda Choo Quan, Nicole Kelly, Becca Baca, and Sonia Louise Davis inside her installation Survival Guide: inheritance, for a sound-based immersive event.

Zapotec Natural Dyes Workshop
Saturday, April 14, 10am-2pm
Presented by Porfirio Gutierrez & iris yirei hu
$64 Members / $80 Regular

Natural materials have been used to produce dyes and colorants throughout much of human history. In Oaxaca, the way of learning has been passed down through generations. Join master dyer and weaver Porfirio Gutiérrez to learn about the rich history of the craft in its cultural context, to make a range of richly colored dyes using natural colorants derived from the indigo, cochineal, and pericon and to apply the dyes to yarn. Each student will also have the chance to apply the incredible blue shades from indigo to cotton cloth.

This 4 hour workshop includes 1 hour of lecture on traditional Zapotecan weaving and dyes, followed by a 3 hour hands on natural dyes workshop. Material costs are included with ticket price. 

Purchase tickets here

Closing Reception & Artist Talk for Survival Guide: inheritance
Presented by WCCW & iris yirei hu
Friday, April 27, 7pm-10pm
Max 50 participants

For the closing reception of Survival Guide: inheritance, the Women’s Center invites artists and cultural workers to an open forum addressing the intersections of cultural exchange and appropriation, intergenerational knowledge, spiritual practice, and self care politics. More info here.