Focusing on Xinjiang, the westernmost region of the People’s Republic of China (also known as "East Turkestan" or "Uyghuristan" to the area’s ethnic Muslim Uyghurs), Never Give Up The Fruit explores the triangulation of Uyghur culture between the twin ideological poles of communism and political Islam, Russia, and China. The exhibition takes its title from the legend of the Fragrant Concubine, the Uyghur Khoja Iparhan, also known as Xian Fe. Renowned as not only beautiful, but irresistible because of her enticing honeydew-like aroma, Khoja Iparhan was kidnapped to pleasure the Qianlong Emperor of the Qing Dynasty. Taken against her will, Khoja Iparhan refused to submit to the Emperor’s desires, and in effect, she "never gave up the fruit."
Commissioned by Forever & Today, October 6-November 18, 2012