Insoon Ha, Legion, 2004-10

We Came in Droves

Insoon Ha, Jimm Tran

A Space Main Gallery

February 19 – March 27, 2010

Curated by: Reena Katz

Performance by Insoon Ha on Friday, Feb 19, at 6:30 pm
Opening Reception directly afterward, from 7 – 9pm

We Came in Droves features the sculpture and performance of Insoon Ha and the self-portrait photography of Jimm Tran. Both artists approach the body as a dynamic site of history, culture, gender and power. In Tran’s images, wounds become hardened scars, sexy selves and kindred spirits. His photographs birth a stunning multiplicity of identities. Ha explores her connection to American military presence in Korea as a youth with visceral repetition and metonym. Her sculptural forms are at once removed and deeply visceral. Curator Reena Katz pairs these artworks as reflections on the internal workings of subjectivity, and power of artwork to refuse social borders.


Insoon Ha holds both a BFA and MFA from the University of Seoul in Sculpture, and a second MFA from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She has exhibited her sculptural works and media installations throughout Korea, the United States and Canada. Recent exhibitions include: The Island, Big Orbit Gallery, Buffalo, NY (2008); The Life and Death of I.D., McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton, ON (2006); X Industria: CAFKA 05, Kitchener City Hall, ON; Beyond/In Western New York 2005, Albright-Knox Art Museum, Buffalo, NY; State of Being, 621 Gallery, Tallahassee, FL.; Being Absent, Art Space & Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, Buffalo, NY, U.S.; and Gender Alarm, LA CENTRALE Gallery Powerhouse, Montreal, QC, Canada (2008). This year Ha received a Project Grant from the Canada Council for Arts to support the completion of a new body of work for a solo exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art in Toronto.

Jimm Tran is a self portrait artist who expresses himself through an ongoing series of photographs entitled: Self Identities. His work explores issues of race, gender, sexuality, his own transgender persona and the impact these issues have on the viewer and society. Born of Vietnamese heritage, his family was a part of the “boat people” exodus from Northern Vietnam in the late 1970’s. He graduated from Ryerson University in the Still Photography Program. In 1999, he became publisher of DRAGÜN magazine: a hip, glossy Gay Asian Lifestyle magazine garnering him a noteworthy honor by Maclean’s magazine as one of the “100 Young Canadians to Watch” in the millennium. Jimm has been featured in various publications and he is the recipient a Canada Council for Arts grant. Jimm resides in Toronto and continues to explore his life and society both as male and female… and is loving every minute of it.

Reena Katz uses recorded sound, handmade electronics, wood and live performance to create diverse listening spaces. Her work explores gender, ethnicity, migration and anachronism with a constant reference to collectivity and oral archive. Katz focuses on the use and re-use of analog sound technologies, as well as fibers and materials from a variety of wounded landscapes. Her curatorial interests lie in the intersection of history and subjectivities. Most recently, she curated an international group of new media artists for the Toronto Palestine Film Festival exhibition, Jewels in the Machine. Katz teaches listening practice and audio production in a variety of educational settings. Her compositions, installations and performances have been exhibited at galleries, festivals and on radio internationally, including Toronto, Montreal, New York and Berlin.