David Khang, Wrong Places / Mauvais Endroit / Lugar Incorrecto / 틀린 장소, 2014

Wrong Places

David Khang

A Space Main Gallery

May 16 – June 14, 2014

Essay by: Dina Al-Kassim

There will be a performance at A Space Gallery at 7:30 pm

Wrong Places / Mauvais Endroit / Lugar Incorrecto / 틀린 장소 is a solo exhibition that reinterprets David Khang’s ongoing series of site-specific and site-responsive performative public works. Staged in various international sites from 2007 to 2012 Khang evokes such iconic moments of resistance as the massacre of 300 unarmed students in Mexico City in 1968 and the FLQ Crisis in Quebec in 1973. The artist moves through the demilitarized zone in Nicosia, Cyprus and the courtyard of the Chilean presidential palace where Allende vowed to stay during the coup d’état of 1973. Khang’s process is steeped in research as each iteration is physically and linguistically centered on political turmoil which he distills, translates and enunciates in multiple languages. The result, at once dissonant and consonant, questions historic amnesia.


David Khang is a visual and performance artist based in Vancouver. In recent works that incorporate live animals and organs of speech, Khang uses language as a trope to consider constructions and performativity of gender and race, contextualized within postcolonial history and contemporary culture. In his most current series of site-specific public projects titled “Wrong Places”, Khang mines geopolitical histories to produce tangential and often hyperbolic readings, as a way to remember, remix, and re-imagine their poetic and political potentials. After completing a BSc (Psychology) and DDS (Dentistry), both from the University of Toronto, Khang received his BFA from Emily Carr Institute of Art + Design (2000), and MFA from the University of California, Irvine (2004). He concurrently completed UCI’s Critical Theory Emphasis, for which he studies with Jacques Derrida, Etienne Balibar, and David Joselit. Khang is a 2006-07 recipient of the Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance Art (NY). In 2010, he was a resident artist at SymbioticA Center for Excellence in Biological Arts, Perth, Australia. Khang was born in Seoul, grew up in Toronto, and currently resides in Vancouver where is an Adjunct Faculty at the Emily Carr University of Art + Design.

Dina Al-Kassim, Ph.D. (Calif., Berkeley) is Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia. Her book “On Pain of Speech: Fantasies of the First Order and the Literary Rant” focuses on the ‘politics of address’ through the lens of Michel Foucault’s notion of the biopolitical subject and finds that its abject address is an essential yet overlooked feature of modernism.