Detail View: Yin-Ju Chen & Li-Chun Lin (Marina), Sonic Driving, 2018–ongoing. Mixed media installation (watercolor drawings, pencil sketches, ink on paper, HD video, 7.1 surround sound, and workshops); dimensions variable. Commissioned by the 13th Gwangju Biennale and V-A-C Foundation. Courtesy of the Artists.


Close Your Eyes and You Will Know

Another Knowledge Is Possible II

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  • Gallery & Online


UPDATE as of 19 May 2022:

Due to the Omicron outbreak and lockdown in Shanghai as of 11 March, the ICA’s Spring 2022 exhibition Close Your Eyes and You Will Know with Yin-Ju Chen and Li-Chun Lin (Marina) (opened on 3 March) was closed to visitors. As the lockdown continues in Shanghai, the exhibition will remain closed through the Spring 2022 season. Therefore, the ICA has rescheduled the exhibition to Fall 2022. 


Close Your Eyes and You Will Know is an exhibition by Taipei-based artist Yin-Ju Chen and shaman practitioner Li-Chun Lin (Marina). Their collaborative project Sonic Driving (2018–ongoing) employs shamanic methods to access altered states of consciousness and to create alternative realities. Sonic Driving further invites others to learn and to experiment with shamanic practice, to create radical knowledges of self and for an expanded collectivity. 

Chen and Lin’s multimedia installation charts out the space of the ICA gallery into the tripartite cosmology of 巫 (“wu”—the Chinese character for shamanism): an upper world manifested in a video of two arduous intertwining journeys—both spiritual and physical—to the realm of deities; a middle world invoked by a deep visceral drumming through which humans, in coexistence with the more-than-human, access the upper and lower worlds; and a lower world depicted in watercolor drawings and notes scrawled by Chen, recalling her own shamanic journeys.  An ink drawing made by Lin illustrating the “wu” cosmology, stands in the center, anchoring this symbolic universe. 

As an integral part of the ongoing Sonic Driving project, Chen and Lin assemble local and global participants to workshops initiating shamanic journeys to these other worlds. Past shamanic assemblies have sought oracles seeking answers to questions such as: How will global warming affect the Earth?  How will artificial intelligence affect humans in the future? What will our world look like 100 years from now? Video text documents of past workshops are projected onto the ceiling, along the margins of the “middle world.” An oracle recorded in one document, from 2018, portends a near future that became our present.  "Why the shamanic way?" the artists ask, "Because it works."

By breaking away from habits of clinging to the visible, tangible, and logical, the artists invite visitors to purge rigid dichotomies between science and mysticism, as well as mind and body, and to obtain revelations of esoteric knowledge otherwise inaccessible to reason.  Exhibition visitors and workshop participants alike must lay their bodies down and close their eyes to see in the dark; to produce new knowledges through other ways of knowing.

Close Your Eyes and You Will Know is accompanied by related events, including:

“The Way to Mandala: The Artistic Practice of Connecting the Self to the Universe” by Yin-Ju Chen

  • Wed, 9 March, 13:30–15:00 CST, online 
    Chinese (with simultaneous interpretation in English) 

a journey with missions to the other world led by the Li-Chun Lin (Marina) and Yin-Ju Chen

  • Sat, 19 March, 14:00-17:00 CST, onsite (ICA Gallery)

  • Sat, 9 April, 16:00-17:00 CST, online (compulsory pre-workshop lecture)
  • Sun, 10 April, 16:00-18:30 CST, online (workshop)

“Gnosis—Shamanism and Magic, A Practitioner’s Exploration” by Li-Chun Lin (Marina)

  • Thur, 21 April, 13:45–15:15 CST, online
    Chinese (with simultaneous interpretation in English)

Registration is required for all events. 
Scroll down to “Related” below for more information on each event.  

The exhibition Close Your Eyes and You Will Know and related events are presented as the second season of the ICA’s second biennial artist research program, Another Knowledge Is Possible (2021-23), exploring neglected and repressed ways of knowing and the complex politics of knowledge decolonization. 

​​Close Your Eyes and You Will Know, an exhibition by Yin-Ju Chen and Li-Chun Lin (Marina), is organized by Michelle Yeonho Hyun with ZHU Sicong and BAO Yang, and with additional support by LIN Siqi, CHEN Yindi, CUI Yiheng, GU Weiwei, WANG Danni, Brooke Xingli Chen, SHEN Jianing, WANG Yuezhan, Jolie Chen, and ZHU Yanlin. Design by The Exercises. 

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