Her creative cup runneth over
In one of her films two women try to squeeze into a Japanese bathtub and in another, the arms of sexual cyborgs turn into dildos. And just when you thought the world of queer media artist and film-maker Shu Lea Cheang couldn’t get any kinkier, she came out with Baby Love: Drive Me Drive Me Crazy.
The installation, which has just left Melbourne for CarriageWorks, will feature six giant pink teacups filled with baby doll clones.
By logging on to www.babylove.biz, the public can upload a love song from the Baby Love soundtrack, directly to the teacup.
Visitors to the Eveleigh art space can then “ride” a teacup by selecting their love song of choice.
Baby Love was developed in response to author Ryu Murakami’s Coin Locker Babies, in which two babies born from lockers are tormented by the sound of their mother’s heartbeat.
Cheang’s net installation works are included in the permanent collections of the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and NTT[ICC] in Tokyo.
And when she is not flying between her homes in New York and Paris she is exploring virtual sexuality through her films.
“I do explore lesbian sexuality, but also transsexuality,” she said. “Transsexuality has more to do with virtual identity issues.
“Since the arrival of the internet, people have been able to assume a different kind of gender, and this means that in real life you see a kind of gender-crossing sexuality play.”
The sexual cyborgs in one of Cheang’s best known sci-fi porn flicks IKU copulate with everyone they encounter and record their “orgasm” data on a hard drive.
Her other films have included Fresh Kill, about a lesbian couple who live on the edge of a garbage dump, and Sex Fish, an erotic lesbian film about female power.
The only repose Shu Lea Cheang gets from her world of fantasy, she said, was through travel.
“I am able to engage the people in the different cities I visit,” she said. “And that serves as a very solid ground for the imagination.
“But really, one who travels or shuffles quite a bit from city to city is living in an unreal world too.”
Baby Love can be seen at CarriageWorks, 245 Wilson St, Eveleigh, from 1 October to 2 November. For more information go to www.carriageworks.com.au and to upload a song go to www.babylove.biz.