In Lust, Love, and Loss, flesh becomes object, and object softens into flesh. The skin becomes a veil, a billowing cloth a sail, the body a bowl—or an ornament—or a frame. Material and matter, animate and inanimate, dead and alive are the same: the line of an etching, a brushstroke, a bronze, a breath, a word, clay. A ship, a channel, a chamber, a chalice, a creature, a carafe, a woman, a cloud, a sound: Vessel.

Irene Hsiao is 2020–2021 Smart Museum Artist in Residence. Irene Hsiao and this project are supported by the 2020 Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist program. This project is inspired by the 2021 Smart Museum exhibition Lust, Love, and Loss in Renaissance Europe.

Movement: Irene Hsiao
Music: Bravais Lattice (Raul Barragàn and Claire Zurkowski)
Costume: Vin Reed

Links Hall video made possible by the Walder Foundation’s Chicago Takes 10 series and Pivot Arts

Lighting and Technical Direction: Giau Minh Truong
Videography: Paul Scudder
Sound Engineering: Che Arthur

Smart Museum of Art video recorded by Irene Hsiao

Concept and editing by Irene Hsiao. 

Irene Hsiao’s projects at the Smart Museum include live and digital performances responding to exhibitions including The Allure of Matter: Material Art from China and Monster Roster: Existentialist Art in Postwar Chicago, and artworks by Tang Chang, Virginio Ferrari, Bingyi Huang, and Emmanuel Pratt. 

Bravais Lattice is an experimental music group made up of Raul Barragàn and Claire Zurkowski. All sound explorations are intended to contribute tranquility to a space. Raul Barragàn is a musician and visual artist native to Chicago. His solo music project is Oro. Claire Zurkowski makes music and dyes and sews silk wearables. Her PhD research at the University of Chicago is on the crystal structure of chemical compounds that may be forming in Earth and planetary cores.

Vin Reed combines design, photography, and illustration in partnerships with companies including Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, DanceWorks Chicago, Hedwig Dances, The Seldoms, Dance for Life, and Same Planet Performance Project. His costume design has been featured in the Museum of Contemporary Art retrospective “Break Out," and his photographs of Chicago dancers have been exhibited internationally. 

Giau Minh Truong acts, directs, and stage-manages multidisciplinary performance. He is production manager and associate curator at Links Hall. 

Paul Scudder is a videographer and editor in Chicago.

Che Arthur is a Chicago-based audio engineer, producer, and musician who has worked throughout the city and toured nationally and internationally for decades.

Special thanks to Nora S. Lambert, Orianna Cacchione, Erik L. Peterson, Sara Hindmarch, Jacqueline C. Finley, C.J. Lind, Michael Christiano, Julieanne Ehre, Roell Schmidt, and Vin Reed.