New Seattle Asian Art Museum exhibit has ‘mythic’ proportions

‘Hybrid Skin, Mythical Presence’ are performance works from Tacoma-based artist Anida Yoeu Ali.

Seven women cross a street in Bellevue, WA with chadors in various colors.

This Abbey Road-inspired performance of “The Red Chador” took place in Bellevue in 2021.

Image via Anida Yoeu Ali/Photo by Dylan Maddux

Attention, curious art lovers — an exhibit that uses live performances and textiles to discuss social displacement makes its debut at the Seattle Asian Art Museum (SAAM) on Thursday, Jan. 18.

“Hybrid Skin, Mythical Presence” comes from Tacoma-based artist Anida Yoeu Ali, who created two performance pieces from visually eye-catching garments. Elements of each performance reflect her identity as a Cham-Muslim woman born in Cambodia and raised in the US.

In “The Buddhist Bug,” Ali dons a bright orange, worm-like costume as she silently interacts with onlookers. For “The Red Chador,” she covers herself in a red cloak traditionally worn by Muslim women while bowing and beckoning to people passing by. Ali has performed both works all over the world — including in Bellevue — throughout the past decade.

At SAAM, you can see clothes, videos, and photos from Ali’s performances on display through July 7. She’ll also be here to perform each work in person on March 23 and June 1.

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