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immaterial bodies
Curator (Recipient of Objectifs Curator Open Call 2020)
Objectifs Centre for Photography and Film
3 September - 1 November 2020

Extending a thread of inquiry situated between the material world of things and the immaterial world of affects, immaterial bodies weaves together the works of Weixin Quek Chong, ila, Wayne Lim and Denise Yap. Through varied approaches, they explore how bodies respond to and are affected by different encounters, serving as conduits for affective responses and surfacing new possibilities of existence and relationships, ideas which are especially relevant in a world made more precarious, anxious and chaotic in light of Covid-19's global impact.


The works of the artists in the exhibition probe four areas: the memory of the body in relation to shifting urban landscapes; systems of control over the citizen body; morphings and transformations of the post-human body; alternative kinships and possibilities of being. The exhibition questions: can we speculate on the potential of artworks as disobedient agents to generate affect that sits (in-between, beside, under, behind, next to, alongside...) the prescribed, rational world? How can affect be a way to resist controls and trace the emotional contours of life during increasingly precarious times? How have previous notions of bodily relations, distanced encounters, and forms of collectivity and exchange transformed in a post-pandemic climate?

immaterial bodies, curated by Seet Yun Teng is the recipient of Objectifs Curator Open Call 2020, an annual programme that encourages innovative curatorial approaches to lens-based art by giving emerging curators an opportunity to realise an exhibition with professional and financial support.

3 Sept 2020 – Extended Opening & Guided Tour
18 October 2020, 12pm – 6pm – Tactility Studies: Pandemic Distances


An immersive workshop experience presented as part of immaterial bodies.

When was the last time you touched someone other than people in your household, or your family?

2020 has been a peculiar year of minimised human touch, rapid digitalisation, and a pervasive air of uncertainty as the world recalibrates around an unseen virus. In these times, we protect one another by not-hugging, bumping elbows, and trying as far as possible not to breathe the same air. What then are options that do still remain for us to touch? In the durational work Tactility Studies: Pandemic Distances, we sensitise the soles of the feet, and play with gestures of self-care in public space – in persistent hope of expanding the current choreographies of touch and connection.

Tactility Studies: Pandemic Distances is based on Tactility Studies, a performative project jointly manifested by Chong Gua Khee and Bernice Lee, theatre and dance artists who have been collaborating since 2016. In Tactility Studies, they invite people to open up their bodies as sites and spaces for performance – to be soft, to wobble, to uncoil. Paying attention to how touch can be both transgressive and reparative, Tactility Studies desires to generate new affective discourses around platonic, pleasurable, safe touch and consent. Tactility Studies has been incubated at and supported by Dance Nucleus since 2018. For more information visit:

Curator’s Note:
The ideas and intentions of Tactility Studies align strongly with this exhibition, and they are invited to be part of the public programme for immaterial bodies. In light of the pandemic crisis and the indelible traces it has left on our social and bodily behaviours, Tactility Studies has evolved as an emergent and responsive effort to present, Tactility Studies: Pandemic Distances.

Co-directors: Chong Gua Khee and Bernice Lee
Production Manager: Lam Dan Fong
Dramaturg: Corrie Tan
Performers: Habibah Mohckeram + Adele Goh
Visual/Set Design: Habibah Mohckeram  
Music/Sound Design: SAtheCollective

Digital Activations

Presented by | Objectifs Centre for Photography and Film

Supported by | National Arts Council, Tote Board Arts Fund

Artists | Weixin Quek Chong, ila, Xafier Yap, Wayne Lim

Contributors (Entanglements) | Ang Kia Yee, Soh Kay Min

Programme Partner | Tactility Studies

Design | Currency 
Photo/Video Documentation | Third Street Studio

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