!!! THE INTIMATE VERNACULAR !!!
Salty Xi Jie Ng co-creates semi-fictional paradigms for the real and imagined lives of humans within the poetics of the intimate vernacular. Often playing with relational possibilities, her interdisciplinary work is manifested from fantasy scores for the present and future that propose a collective re-imagining through humour, care, subversion, play, discomfort, a celebration of the eccentric, and a commitment to the deeply personal. Her practice dances across forms such as brief encounter, collaborative space, variety show, poem, conversation, meal, publication, film, performance.
As a citizen scholar of the cosmos, Xi Jie explores aging, intimacy, food, lineage, identity, ritual and power, while questioning who artists are and what gets to be called art. Her research of everyday as performance bears fruit as tender presentations somewhere between art and life. Centering the body and its histories, she constructs portrayals of self and space that are ambiguous, raw, dream-like, absurd, mundane. At heart she is a cosmic clown, floating at the intersections of wonder and melancholy, existential meditation and devotional nonsense.
Salty has an MFA in art & social practice from Portland State University. Recently she was artist-in-residence at Singapore Art Museum, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's College of Visual & Performing Arts, Buangkok Square (National Arts Council Singapore Community Arts Residency) as well as artist fellow at New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park.
In 2019, she released the Intimacy issue of The Grandma Reporter, a collaborative publication project on senior women's culture around the earth, and co-created The Inside Show, the world's first variety show made in collaboration with prisoners in Columbia River Correctional Institution in Portland, OR (USA). She was the 2020-21 editor of Conversations On Everything / Social Forms of Art Journal, a Portland OR publication. In 2021 she was commissioned by T:>Works Festival of Women N.O.W. to make Not Grey: Intimacy, Ageing & Being with senior women.
Her work has been supported by diverse platforms from Singapore Art Week, Elsewhere Museum, No Star Arts Grant, and Kaman Art Foundation, to King School Museum of Contemporary Art, Singapore International Film Festival, and Hollywood Senior Center.
Her current research and work focus on:
Ancestor worship as a way of continuing relationships between the living and dead; creative acts of grief; re-imagining of ritual as it relates to contemporary cultural and ancestral identity; Chinese folk religious practices
The relationship between museum acquisition and social forms of art