MAI LING

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MAI LING KOCHT: EATING AS PLEASURE AND PROTEST


Experimental Video, 12:27min, 2021

The evolution of Asian food through mobility has a long-standing history. Not only has it evolved in the occidental world to adapt to “western standards” of taste, aesthetics and aroma, dishes have also been redefined according to the availability of ingredients and local produce. Improvisation becomes key to habituate oneself to a new context where food standards differ. Mai Ling wants to deconstruct recurring representations of the Asian female migrant body by questioning notions of exoticism, the kitchen and the sensorial, and aesthetic experiences of food. The performances of Mai Ling Kocht unfold the narratives behind migration and food, not only as multicultural additions to European palettes, but as representations of societal barriers and invisible forms of discrimination.


By tending to our desires for comfort and pleasure, food transforms beyond mere sustenance to a medium that satiates what was lost through migration. Through performative interactions with food, Mai Ling deconstructs oppressive structures and stereotypes — those that have been superimposed and reproduced — as a means for survival and protest.

Supported by Kültür gemma!