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wings walking water

a project, a practice, an ongoing story by Baco Ohama

For a long time I have had an interest in language; in what gets carried and conveyed, hidden and revealed, through one’s use of language; and in what gets discovered and understood when working with language as one aspect of an artistic practice. I am interested in stories that aren’t necessarily narratives told in one stretch, from beginning to end. My interest is in building, telling, and sharing stories in ways that might be experienced through glimmers and bits or felt in the relational spaces between locations and generations, between the dreams of night and the sensory experiences of day, between the uncanny and the mundane, and between the spoken and heard. 

wings walking water is a project and practice that plays in the osmotic space of both the known and unknown and tends to flow backwards and forward in time, moving from location to location, site to site, even as I try to live and work mindful of each present moment and experience . . . 

some current or recent works

(beyond reading) is one of the postcards that are a part of my still, not still project.

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(  . . .  ) is one of the 2023 postcards.

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(February 2023)

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found is the first poem in the series writing from spines.

(November 2022)

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While dealing with COVID aftermath challenges, in June 2022, I picked up a pencil and started a series of small drawings, called healing lines.

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sweet brine is a quick pickling poem (a 50 second video), created as a part of the conversations and exchanges that I’ve been having with Jon Sasaki for the Yume. Digital Dreams project. Fourteen artists of Japanese heritage – representing diverse disciplines, geographies, and generations – were invited to participate, to connect online, and in collaborative teams of two to be in conversation and to create together over a four month period (February – May 2022).

Jon Sasaki’s photograph inept paper dolls and my response piece I always say that I can’t draw – but isn’t drawing just a moving line?

On the pages the play of slippages and ‘Yume’ responses & exchanges, I’ve shared more of the back and forth exchanges between Jon Sasaki and I, as we worked on the Yume. Digital Dreams project. The final piece of our collaborative process is the video Misconstructions.

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The short video a dance of eggs was created in January 2022, as part of my sensorial still project.

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listening lines was created in response to Faye HeavyShield’s New Work that was on exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery in Vancouver, B.C. in the fall of 2021.

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Regina Walks, which is part three of the poetic and the pandemic project, was screened at the Regina Public Library’s Film Theatre on September 10, 2021 and then was featured in the Mediatheque space at the Dunlop Art Gallery in Regina, Saskatchewan until December 2021. My heartfelt gratitude goes out to Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway, Iris James, Zoë James, Tomas Jonsson, Savannah Kosteniuk, Barbara Meneley, Gary Varro, and Mark Wihak who all generously offered to text walk various neighbourhoods and streets in Regina for this project. Without their help, this project would not have come into being.

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I started this everyday poetics postcard series back in August 2017, but it’s an ongoing project.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the things I thought I could do, was to try and mail out more postcardie letters. I thought that maybe finding a tangible, personal piece of mail in one’s mailbox would be something others might appreciate, especially during the time when we were asked not to gather or to visit with each other. I had stamps. And thankfully I had recently bought a new box of MOAB’s Entrada Rag Paper, so I could continue to print postcards.

I figured out that it took one stamp to mail out an envelope with three postcards in it (if mailing in Canada at least). So although in the past my postcardie letters would often be longer, during the pandemic I limited each letter to three postcards. That way, I didn’t have to make trips to the post office to get my letters weighed. I could just drop them in a mailbox, whenever I went out for a short neighbourhood walk.

Since I ran out of store bought envelopes, I also started to make my own … remembering how satisfying it is to be making what I need from scratch or with whatever I happened to have on hand. This process I realize was also comforting . . .

(March 2020)