Johanna Hedva

    3 .11.2022 Lecture

    Johanna Hedva

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    Johanna Hedva is a Korean American writer, artist, and musician, who was raised in Los Angeles by a family of witches, and now lives in LA and Berlin. Hedva’s practice cooks magic, necromancy, and divination together with mystical states of fury and ecstasy, and political states of solidarity and disintegration. They are devoted to deviant forms of knowledge and to doom as a liberatory condition. There is always the body — its radical permeability, dependency, and consociation — but the task is how to eclipse it, how to nebulize it, and how to cope when this inevitably fails. Whether the form is novels, essays, theory, poetry, music, performance, AI, videogames, installation, sculpture, drawings, or trickery, ultimately Hedva’s work is different kinds of writing because it is different kinds of language embodied: it is words on a page, screaming in a room, dragging a hand through water.

    Hedva is the author of Minerva the Miscarriage of the Brain (Sming Sming/Wolfman Books 2020), which collects a decade of work in poetry, plays, performances, and essays. Their novel On Hell (Sator Press/Two Dollar Radio 2018), was named one of Dennis Cooper’s favorites of 2018. Their next book, a novel called Your Love Is Not Good, will be published by And Other Stories Press in 2023.

    Their album The Sun and the Moon was released in March 2019; two of its tracks were played on the moon. Their new LP, Black Moon Lilith in Pisces in the 4th House, a doom-metal guitar and voice performance influenced by Korean shamanist ritual, was released 1 January 2021 on crystalline morphologies and Sming Sming.

    Their work has been shown in Berlin at Gropius Bau, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Klosterruine, and Institute of Cultural Inquiry; The Institute of Contemporary Arts in London; Performance Space New York; Gyeongnam Art Museum in South Korea; the LA Architecture and Design Museum; the Museum of Contemporary Art on the Moon; and in the Transmediale, Unsound, Rewire, and Creepy Teepee Festivals. Hedva has written about the political and mystical capacities of Nine Inch Nails, Sunn O))), and Lightning Bolt; the legacy of Susan Sontag; Ancient Greek tragedies; and the revolutionary potential of illness. Their writing has appeared in Triple Canopy, frieze, The White Review, Topical Cream, Spike, Lithub, Die Zeit, and is anthologized in Whitechapel: Documents of Contemporary Art. Their essay “Sick Woman Theory,” published in 2016, has been translated into 10 languages.