Stories

New York

Visual AIDS Vanguard Awards (VAVA VOOM) / May 16, 2019 / NYC


At the 14th Annual Visual Aids Vanguard Awards, Muna Tseng was honored for her work strengthening the cultural history of art, AIDS and activism in her work for the Estate of Tseng Kwong Chi and for her own dance practice, especially in her elegiac piece SlutForArt, which is in homage to her late brother the photographer Tseng Kwong Chi. The award was presented by Julie Tolentino and a special duet was performed by both Julie and Muna.

Dance Oral History Project: Jerome Robbins Dance Division at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Lincoln Center 

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Muna Tseng in conversation with Lesley Farlow in June 2018, telling the story of her life as a dancer, choreographer, and Creative Director of the Estate of Tseng Kwong Chi. In this excerpt, Muna explains the development of her solo “Water, Water” in 1986  for her debut evening-length concert as Muna Tseng Dance Projects. Listen to the full playlist here

NüVoices of the Diaspora: An Evening of Storytelling / March 14, 2019 / NYC

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At MOCA Museum of Chinese in America in New York, Muna shared three excerpts of her “Family Portraits” works, which use text, dance and artifacts to tell stories about her paternal grandfather, her mother, and her brother based on their experience of the Chinese diaspora. 

Reading: 98.6: A Convergence in 15 Minutes / April 18, 2018 / NYC

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In the intimate and significant setting of the Tenement Museum, Muna gave a reading with collaborator Ping Chong on their dance-theater piece ‘98.6: A Convergence in 15 Minutes,’ a biographical work about both losing a brother.

This event on April 18, 2018 was curated by Pen America for their World Voices Festival.

Artist-In-Residence at the Baryshnikov Arts Center, NYC

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Photo: Tatyana Tenenbaum

Muna Tseng was an Artist-In-Residence at the Baryshnikov Arts Center for the month of April 2017, where she developed, choreographed, directed and performed a new dance-theater work, IT’S ALL TRUE: GRANDFATHER. Her paternal polygamous grandfather was the starting point in exploring the white-washing of Asian-American history using orientalist tropes; and questioning the notion and value of truth and myth.

Muna Tseng’s BAC Story by dramaturge Karen Shimakawa

 Learn more here.

StoryCorps Conversation with Nicky Paraiso 


Part 1:

Part 2:

On August 15, 2016, Muna Tseng and Nicky Paraiso sat down to talk about their shared background as the children of Asian immigrants, artists in New York, and the impact that the AIDS crisis had on their community.

After Fukushima / March 2016 / NYC

Performers Chanterelle Menashe Ribes & Perry Yung Photo courtesy of Janelle Jones

Performers Chanterelle Menashe Ribes & Perry Yung
Photo: Janelle Jones

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Muna performed with Perry Yung in After Fukushima: A 24 Hour Event, curated by Eiko Otake for the Danspace Project at St. Mark’s Church. This commemorative event on the fifth anniversary of the natural and nuclear disaster at Fukushima, March 11-12, 2016.

Fabulous Women / April 2016 / NYC

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Danspace Project‘s Food For Thought, April, 2016: curated by Iréne Hultman Monti. As one of the dancers, Muna joined Emily Carson Coates, Jane Comfort, Moriah Evans, Liz Gerring, Patricia Hoffbauer, Iréne Holtman Monti, Doris Reyes, Vicky Schick, and Charmain Warren.

A Year In the Life of a ‘Bessie: New York Dance & Performance Award’ Nominator / July 2016 / Singapore 

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O.P.E.N. Forum, Singapore International Festival of Arts, and Asia Society, Hong Kong, July 2016: A lecture delivered on the hybrid and multi-disciplinary works emerging in the current New York dance practice.

In Memorium: Jean Erdman 

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Words from Muna Tseng: “When I arrived in New York in 1978, Jean Erdman and Joseph Campbell gave me a creative home to develop as a dancer and an artist. I danced in their Theatre of the Open Eye from 1978-1985. Besides the gift of Joe’s wonderful stories (he was the most fabulous raconteur),  I treasure my inheritance of Jean’s legendary solos: from the earliest “Transformation of Medusa” (1942) to her last creation for Theatre of the Open Eye: “The Shining House” which was based on the Hawaiian volcano goddess Pele. Above all, Jean imparted to me the inner female power. One of my favorite memories was in Athens Greece, we were performing under the full moon shining on the Parthenon, which sat above the ancient Herodes Atticus outdoor Ampitheater. That night I danced in the Greek legends as Io in the Prometheus myth, and as Medusa from her transformation from Virgin to Gorgon.  The night was filled with heros, heroines and divinities, both humans and gods. Now Jean and Joe are in the pantheon of art and heaven, joining the gods and goddesses. They gave to humanity their amazing artistic and intellectual gifts, for which we are forever grateful. Thank you both for being my beloved artistic family in New York.”

and Beyond

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Muna Tseng is Creative Director for the estate of her late brother Tseng Kwong Chi, a seminal photographer of the 1980s. Being the guardian of his legacy, Muna uses archiving as a creative act. SlutForArt, her collaboration with director Ping Chong, mines the estate material, objects, and images by and of Tseng Kwong Chi, to present as living archive. She works closely with curators and scholars in legacy-making.

2015-17 solo retrospective  Tseng Kwong Chi: Performing for the Camera opened at the Grey Gallery NYU and toured to Tufts University Gallery, the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk, Virginia, and the Block Museum of Art.

Screenings

Remembering SlutForArt: Tseng Kwong Chi, A/P/A Institute at NYU: a screening and talk with Muna Tseng, Ping Chong, and dancer-choreographer Bill T. Jones, moderated by Karen Shimakawa.

Talks

Confrontations in Context, Nathan Cummings Foundation: Panel discussion organized by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council that explored the way artists shaped the societal and political landscape of 1980’s and 1990’s New York. The panel was moderated by Martha Wilson.

Muna Tseng by SharomAlouf Keeping the Legacy Alive Conference, Berlin 2016: Muna spoke on strategies for mid-sized artists’ estates in a panel hosted by the Institute for Artists’ Estates.


Epic Journey: Photographic Legacies,
the Grand Palais in Paris France: Muna Tseng discussed her work at the Estate in the Paris Photo platform moderated by Lisa K. Erf.

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Discussion with Alex Fiahlo of Visual AIDS (l), Muna Tseng, and Pato Hebert (r)

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Talk with curators Herb Tam (pictured) and Doryun Chong (of M+ Museum)