How do we share a touch despite its impossibility now?
xhe is not a he, not a she, not an it. Pronounced ‘zhee’ or like ‘j’y’ in French, xhe is the pronoun for the possible, the queer or the multiple, a figure that moves between a Square and an Octopus. In Daniel Kok’s and Miho Shimizu’s performance work xhe, a singular body is already an expression of multiplicity, and One is always Other and Many. This durational performance is a choreographic bricolage of different forms – installation art, dance, music, film – bringing different artists and audiences together in search for this elusive figure.
In light of COVID-19, Daniel Kok and his team are in residence at Dance Nucleus in Singapore to translate this performance work, for which liveness is a crucial ingredient, into a digital version for online engagement. Recognising the participatory nature of the original work and the current question of physical distance, xhe (online) reflects on what is lost or gained with the ubiquity of telecommuting in our lives today, attempts to transcend the limitations of the computer screen and revive a sense of social proximity. As we spend time together, we hope to summon, to discover, to receive, even to become xhe.