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Shu Lea Cheang

Shu Lea Cheang

Born in 1954, in Taiwan
Lives and work in Paris, France

Virus Becoming



Cheang is an artist and filmmaker who engages in genre-bending, gender-hacking art practices. Celebrated as a net art pioneer with her work BRANDON (1998-99), she represented Taiwan with a mixed media installation 3x3x6 at the Venice Biennale (2019). Crafting her genre of “Sci-Fi New Queer Cinema”, she has made four feature films: FRESH KILL (1994), I.K.U. (2000), FLUIDø (2017), and UKI (2023). In 2023, she toured UKI screenings at the LAS Art Foundation, Centre Pompidou, MoMA, ICA, etc. She is currently showing two artworks: RED PILL (2023) at Hope, Techno-Humanities (Museion), and UTTER (2023) at Attention After Technology (Kunsthall Trondheim).

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Virus Becoming

HD Video, stereo sound, 6:18 min

Derived from Cheang’s full-length feature film UKI (2023), Virus Becoming (2022) is a 3D sketch for the birth of UKI, the virus. Following the plot of UKI, Virus Becoming traces the trajectory of Reiko, a defunct humanoid deemed redundant and dumped as a piece of trash at Etrashville by Genom Corporation. Reiko unpacks their electro-body parts to reboot themselves into existence. Encountering Etrashville’s inhabitants: the trans-mutants, hackers, coders, migrants, refugees, and native labourers, Reiko undergoes a series of trans-formation and codings, ultimately emerging as UKI, the virus.

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