開飯喇 /緊呷 (hoi faan laa /gin jia) / Monique Gawne and Carmen Yih
開飯喇 /緊呷 (hoi faan laa /gin jia) is a collaborative video and performance work from artists Carmen Yih and Monique Gawne. Carmen and Monique both cook alone in public spaces – one at dawn and one at dusk, connected across distances through the ritual process of cooking meals close to their heart. What they are cooking is hidden from view, yet, they welcome you to cook with them. Monique and Carmen explore how food, cooking, and sharing a meal are all common ways of communicating love. 開飯喇 /緊呷 (hoi faan laa /gin jia) is also an homage to all the unspoken acts of love shown to them by their Asian family members. The work also explores the nuances of Asian-Australian identity. Cooking an Asian meal in public that is usually reserved for the private familial home references the need to consciously and observably practice aspects of our Asian culture in order to ‘keep our asianness alive.’ Monique and Carmen imbue deeply personal, emotional connections into the artwork and invite viewers to reflect on their own cultural identity and connection to food.