Ho Tzu Nyen A for Agents

Ho Tzu Nyen

$26.40 (+tax)

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To be published in the middle of June
Ho Tzu Nyen’s films, video installations, and performances traverse historical events, political ideologies, subjectivities, and cultural identities of Southeast Asia. Drawing from existing film footage, archival material, and documentation, rearranged into abstract yet evocative images, his work renders the complexities of geopolitical histories palpable. Ho’s work has been presented in numerous art institutions and biennials as well as theaters and film festivals worldwide. In Japan, he has participated in exhibitions including Time of Others at the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo in 2015, and he has produced new work for the Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama (TPAM) in 2018 and again in 2021, Aichi Triennale 2019, Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media (YCAM) in 2021, and Toyota Municipal Museum of Art in 2021–22.

This latest exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo, Ho Tzu Nyen: A for Agents, traces the trajectory of the artist’s practice, presenting six film-based installations alongside a new work. The exhibition includes Ho’s earliest video installation, Utama—Every Name in History Is I (2003), which challenges the modern narrative of Singapore’s foundations by tracing its precolonial origin to Sang Nila Utama, who is said to have named the land “Singapura” (Lion City, in Sanskrit). Singapore’s past also features in One or Several Tigers (2017), where 3D animations of a tiger and a human morph into various instances of the ruler and the subjugated, including the precolonial tiger as ancestor spirit and the mythological weretiger; the colonial encounter of a tiger and the road surveyor George D. Coleman who served the British administration in the nineteenth century; and the battle between the British army and the “Tiger of Malaya,” Japanese military commander Tomoyuki Yamashita, during World War II.
The exhibition catalogue is structured around the six exhibited works, with installation views, video still cuts and other valuable documents created during the production of the works. It also includes four essays that read the multilayered works and a text by Ho written in the past, which brings us closer to the essence of his constantly renewed production.



Ho Tzu Nyen A for Agents
April 9-July 7, 2024
Museum of Contemporary Art of Tokyo
10:00-18:00 (last admission 16:30)
Closed on Mondays (except Apr. 29, May 6), Apr. 30, May 7



Size: 210 x 135 mm / Book: Coptic binding / 256P
Design: Hiromi Fujita
Texts: Chika Kishita, Maerkle, Tomoyuki Arai, Che Kyongfa
Languages: Japanese / English
Price: 3,300 yen
Publisher: torch press
ISBN: 978-4-907562-48-9
Year: 2024


Ho Tzu Nyen
Born 1976 in Singapore and lives there. Ho Tzu Nyen’s films, video installations and performances reference and reorganise a wide range of sources and discourses to depict the complex intertwining histories, powers or complex subjectivities of the individual. Ho’s work has been featured internationally and in 2011 she represented the Singapore Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennale. In recent years, Ho’s work has been featured in solo exhibitions at the Hammer Museum (Los Angeles, 2022), Toyota Municipal Museum of Art (2021), Crow Asian Art Museum (Dallas, Texas, USA, 2021), Yamaguchi Centre for Arts and Media [YCAM] (Yamaguchi, 2021), Hamburg Museum (Hamburg, 2018), Ming Dynasty Museum (Shanghai, 2018 He has had solo exhibitions at the Thailand Biennale (Chiang Rai, 2023), the Aichi Triennale 2019 (Nagoya, etc., 2019), the 12th Gwangju Biennale (Gwangju, 2018), and many other international exhibitions. He has also participated in the World Theatre Festival (various German cities, 2010, 2023), the Netherlands Arts Festival (Amsterdam, 2018, 2020), the Berlin International Film Festival (Berlin, 2015), the Sundance Film Festival (Park City, Utah, USA, 2012), the 41st Directors’ Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival (Cannes, 2009) The work has also been featured in theatre and film festivals around the world, including: in 2019, together with artist Hsu Jia-wei, he curated the 7th Asian Art Biennale at the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts.