Ms Beatrice Glow is an artist-researcher who leverages interactive multimedia installations and multisensory experiences to shift dominant narratives and highlight human interconnectivity. Ms Glow often co-labours with historians and community stakeholders to assemble surviving fragments and question colonialist histories. Her ongoing projects on the social histories of plants provide vignettes into the entangled historical realities of dispossession, enslavement, diasporas, trade and extractive economies.
She has been named a 2021 Yale-NUS College Artist-in-Residence, 2019-2020 Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Workspace Artist, 2018-2019 Smithsonian Artist Research Fellow, 2018-2019 Smack Mellon Studio Program Artist, 2017-2018 ZERO1 American Arts Incubator artist, 2016-2017 Artist-in-Residence at the Asian/Pacific/American Institute at New York University and 2008-2009 United States Fulbright Scholar.
She has participated in solo exhibitions including Forts and Flowers (2019) at Taipei Contemporary Art Center; Spice Roots/Routes (2017) at New York University (NYU) Institute of Fine Arts; Aromérica Parfumeur (2016) at Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes de Chile; Mannahatta VR, Wayfinding Project and Lenapeway (2016-2017) at Asian/Pacific/American Institute at NYU; Rhunhattan Tearoom (2015) at Wave Hill; Floating Library (2014) aboard the Hudson River’s Lilac Museum Steamship; and group shows at Honolulu Biennial 2017, Park Avenue Armory and Galeri Nasional Indonesia.
As a Hemispheric Institute Council member and visiting scholar at NYU, she co-founded the Performing Asian/Americas working group. She serves as the program manager for the Public History Project and teaches Diasporic and Decolonial Art History, Theory, and Practice at the School of Visual Arts. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from NYU.
Ms Glow’s trajectory began when she retraced 19th century Asian “coolie” labour in Peru and became aware of the intersecting historical realities of, and tensions between, indigenous and formerly enslaved people, settlers, and migrants. She is sensitive to questions of sovereignty, erasure, indigeneity, belonging, and migration due to her multiple colonialisms in her ancestral homeland, Taiwan. While she is not a culture bearer, she relates to the Asian indigenous cultural heritage as her mother’s village is an Amis cultural stronghold. Understanding herself as a visible racialised settler in America, she worked in allyship with indigenous communities to resist complicity in settler-colonialism. Inspired by the Austronesian seafaring heritage of voyaging from Taiwan and settling Oceania, her relational worldview is guided by the notion“all islands are connected underwater”. This sense of kinship resulted in working with indigenous elders in New York on virtual and augmented reality projects including ‘The Wayfinding Project’, ‘Mannahatta VR’, and public installation ‘Lenapeway’.
Through a land-based perspective, Ms Glow also sees the social history of plants as vignettes into dispossession, enslavement, and extractive trade networks that have impacted our planetary health. Asking “what does colonialism smell like?” has resulted in various projects including ‘Aromérica Parfumeur’ where she made a fake perfume boutique revealing to mall-goers the bloody history behind spicy aromas, engaged with a Manhattan millionaire-row mansion financed by the revenues of American Tobacco Company, and mined the intertwined geopolitical fates of Manhattan and the nutmeg-rich Rhun Island in Indonesia while attempting to bridge the communities living in the aftershocks of this historical reality through ‘Rhunhattan: A Tale of Two Islands’. These threads propel her current work, ‘Smoke Trails’, that grapples with how capitalism and colonialism drive environmental injustices.
Aromérica Parfumeur. New York: Beatrice Glow, September 2018. Collection: MoMA/Franklin Furnace Artist Book Collection
“Art, Community and Technology in the Andes,” ArtPlaceAmerica blog, May 22.
“A Conversation with Beatrice Glow”, The Banda Islands, Hidden Histories & Miracles of Nature, Anthology, Kabar Media, 2017. 66-75. print.
“Beatrice Glow: Circulating Undercurrents,” Cultural Politics Journal, Duke University Press. July 2017. issue, 13.2. 194-201. print.
“Banda “Spice” Islands.” Our Ocean Archive, edited by Map Office and My Art Guide, Lightbox Publishing, 2017. 193-203. print.
“Rhunhattan: A Tale of Two Islands”, NYU Digital Humanities Blog, Oct. 1, 2016
“Where do Asian Latin Americans Belong?” Art Newspaper HK, 21st issue. p.16. December 1.
“What is Chino? Memories and Imaginaries of Asian Latin America,” post: Contemporary and Modern Art Perspectives, Museum of Modern Art. September 30.
“Taparaco Myth.” Trilingual publication in Spanish, Chinese and English. 218 pages. December 8. Collections: Museum of Modern Art, New York, Library; Poets House, Archive; Museum of Chinese in America, Archive; Biblioteca Nacional de Colombia, Library; Stanford University Library
Media Arts for Just Futures