"Hope the baby Jay gone that’s made it"
Text by Rachel Archibald
Hope the baby Jay gone that's made it
“Hope the baby Jay gone that’s made it” is a new series of embroideries prompted by a 2018 interview with one of Armenia’s Civil Contract Party graphic artists. When queried about a shirt and baseball cap that stylistically read “Dukhov” (“With Courage”) that party leader Nikol Pashinyan wore repeatedly during the Velvet Revolution the artist said, “we are not selling anything; we are just trying to set ourselves free from tyranny”. These items had been carefully designed by the party then re-produced and readily available at street stands.
Within this show, clothes contain messages that lie somewhere between the Civil Contract Party’s two-worded logo-slogan and the coded, addressing themes of illegibility, cryptography and the multiverse in relation to graphics, language and also the textile medium they are adhered with/to.
Kiah Reading’s installation, performance and browser-based practice intervenes and extends upon technological and institutional potential, pushing their processes further away from their intended standardised outcome. His present focus is the contemporary desire to commercialise non-economic phenomena – such as passion, creativity and communication and how these ideas filter into our daily interactions with labour, technology and each other.
In the past years, he has introduced his work in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane as well as internationally through exhibitions, residencies and performances, e.g. in Lima, Paris, Antwerp, Istanbul and London. Last year, he was a finalist of the ArteVue ArtePrize at the Delfina Foundation, London and also participated in the Saas-Fee Summer Institute of Art, Berlin.