“Someone asked me what I was doing yesterday, and I replied: “crying and writing”. Grief opens the body into accompaniment of other movements. Sometimes, movement doesn’t feel like movement at all — it is geologically incremental, an unmooring. During my residency at Delfina Foundation, it’s become crucial for me to exist in this fuzzy boundary, where the latches of daily habit fall away and the unexpected comes through; to let what is otherwise recessed surface and find new patterns, especially as an artist and writer who works across forms.”

“Here I inhabit several parallel clocks and calendars all at once; feeling myself through those layers and their asynchronicities denies enclosure. I’m drawn to predicaments of writing and time. During my residency I am conducting research into Père David’s deer (Elaphurus davidianus), also known as the milu. Its histories raise questions such as, what makes up the shared experience of an organism across time, particularly when that time is turbulent and fraught, criss-crossed by desires to collect and to rehabilitate? My first text on this, Memories of the last herd (the herd comes down to dream), has just been published in Making Kin by cthulhu books.”

Studio visits, meetings with other artists, curators, and thinkers, visits to shows, all enabled by the incredible support and investment of the Delfina team, has deepened possibilities and also pushed me to want to think about expanding and spatialising a score piece I made a few years ago, called notes towards a subtle body. Very simply, it is motivated by wanting to restore an alienated sense of potentiality in the body when scripts for life have hardened. I want to centre experiences that like longing, guilt, expectation, death, against a more specific sense of history and location.”

Towards those ends, I’ve been using the time to reach out to people with technical and experimental backgrounds in sound, to re-engage drawing and writing muscles, attend academic talks, trawl online collections for possible connections, and my room is where these wanderings gather their intensities. The Delfina Library, the bookshops at the ICA, Tate, Barbican, and Camden Arts Centre have been an incredible resource. Here is a page from Carolee Schneemann’s Body Politics, issued jointly by the Barbican and Yale University. Some other books in my stack include: The Passion According to G.H. by Clarice Lispector, On Not Knowing by Emily Ogden, The Second Body by Daisy Hildyard, and Feral by George Monbiot.”

I am in a transitory moment: I re-arrange myself, exit, return, dislocate; what I must not do is accompany leadennes, which is not rest – a movement in itself. What does it mean to extend the body in affinity with other time resonances? I think of elsewheres as adjacent: emerging in a whisper, a hair of an idea, an after-image of sound.”

Luca E. Lum (Singapore) is a writer and artist-in-residence during Delfina Foundation’s winter 2023 season. Her residency is supported by Delfina Foundation’s Network of Asia-Pacific Patrons.

Photos artist’s own.