Roski Talks: Simon Leung


Virtual Talk with 
Artist Simon Leung

April 21, 2pm


Virtual talk is open to the public and free.
Reservations required by 5pm on April 20 here.
Zoom link will be distributed the day prior to the event.


Simon Leung’s foremost concern as an artist is how “the ethical,” broadly defined, can be thought and traced. His projects, in various media, include a rethinking of AIDS and otherness using the figures of the pinprick and the glory hole; meditations on “the residual space of the American/Vietnam War” (comprising works on the squatting body as counter-architecture, military desertion as askesis, and surfing); a video essay on the site/non-site dialectic instigated by Robert Smithson’s reception of Edgar Allan Poe (with a little help from Yvonne Rainer); a reconsideration of Marcel Duchamp’s oeuvre as an discourse in ethics (as seen through Étant donnés); “squatting projects” in various cities (Berlin, New York, Chicago, Vienna, Guangzhou, Hong Kong), where the squatting body, as a heuristic cipher, is conjugated by an interpretation generated by the conditions of each location; and a 27 year collaboration with the late Warren Niesłuchowski. 

Leung has participated in the Whitney Biennial (1993), the Venice Biennale (2003), the Luleå Summer Biennial (2005), the Guangzhou Triennial (2008), and the Gwangju Biennale (2018). Some selected venues where Leung has presented his work internationally include Kunstverein München; Inside-Out Art Museum in Beijing; National Museum of Contemporary Art of South Korea; Sala Mendoza in Caracas; 1A Space in Hong Kong; Kunsthalle Fredericianum in Kassel; NGBK and Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin; Generali Foundation and Haus Wittgensteinin Vienna, and the Centre for Contemporary Art, Ujazdowski Castle and Foksal Gallery Foundation in Warsaw. Nationally, his work has been shown at the MIT List Visual Arts Center, the Museum of Modern Art, the New Museum, PS1, The Queens Museum, The Drawing Center, The Kitchen, Art Institute of Chicago, MOCA (LA), Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Huntington Beach Art Center, Las Cienegas Projects, and the MAK Center for Art and Architecture.

Writings and interviews by Leung have appeared in the journals October, Printed Projects, Surface Tension, Shifter, Public Culture, and Documents and the anthologies The Invisible Flâneuse? (Manchester University Press, 2006) and Global Visual Cultures: An Anthology (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011). He is co-editor, with Zoya Kocur, of the anthology Theory in Contemporary Art since 1985 (2nd edition Wiley-Blackwell, 2012). His writing has been translated into French, Portuguese, German, Chinese and Korean.

Leung has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the New York State Council on the arts, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, and the California Community Foundation, as well as grants from Art Matters, the Maryland Arts Council, the MICA Foundation, the University of California Institute for Research in the Arts. For his writing, he received the Art Journal Award for the essay “The Look of Law."

Leung teaches in the Art Department at University of California, Irvine.