Benevolent Nerves

Benevolent Nerves
Adam Shiu-Yang Shaw
26/01 – 1/03/2018

21st Century E.G.G.

Black tea leaves (1 cup)
Sea salt (2/3 cups)
Wood ash (3 cups)
Charcoal ash (3 cups)
Calcium Oxide (3 cups)
Rice Husks (1-1.4 kilo)
Duck Eggs (1 dozen) *
* 56.7 g (mass)

– Brew tea, infused at a 1:8 ratio, in boiling water. Once brewed, let steep for one hour to strengthen.

– Using a sizeable vessel – combine salt, wood ash, charcoal ash and calcium oxide. This combination of natural alkaline compounds aids in activating the preservation process.

– Once steeped, add 3 cups of tea as well as strained leaves to the mixture. Stir thoroughly, adding surplus tea as deemed necessary, until a slurry-like consistency is achieved.

* Adorn latex gloves as the hybrid is mildly corrosive and may result in tissue damage.

– Place six eggs into alkaline solution, coat thoroughly and let sit for 15 minutes. Fill a second vessel with rice husks. After the immersion period has commenced, tumble eggs in husk basin to yield uniform coating. Apply gentle pressure where required as to assure a secure bond. Repeat with two succeeding batches.

– Leave encrusted eggs to sit overnight.

– Come morning, prepare a bed of natural soil – preferably with high clay-content. Select an outdoor location that receives ample precipitation and will be left undisturbed by human activity.

– Construct a long and narrow trench, 1 ft. deep at minimum, in which to place the 1 dozen eggs. Replenish the channel with soil, packed loosely as not to cause structural damage to the preserves.

– In warmer climates (upwards of 15 °C), leave the eggs to process for a minimum of 100 days. For colder temperatures (below 15 °C), they may sit for up to 240. The preserves should be checked individually and intermittently, onwards of presumed completion date.

*Pídàn is said to have originated within China’s Hunan Province. Various renditions of this preservation method can be traced to Shanghai, Guangdong Province, Laos, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

Adam Shiu-Yang Shaw (b. 1987 Edmonton, Canada) currently lives and works in Berlin and Stockholm. He received his  MFA from the Royal Institute of Art, Stockholm, SE (2016), was a guest student at Piet Zwart Institute (2015), Rotterdam NL and his BFA from Emily Carr University of Art, Vancouver, CA (2013).  Selected exhibitions include Jugend ist Trunkenheit ohne Wein, Bikini, Basel (2018), vinegar stone and the language of flowers, Towards, Toronto (2017), Gabinete de Moda, Gabinete, Lisbon, PT, Grounds for Magical Thinking, J Hammond Projects, London (2017), Peach, W139, Amsterdam (2016), Kamias Triennial, Kamias Special Projects, Kamias (2017), Cruising, Mariella Viking Line, Stockholm, SE, (2017), Dinner Room Terravore, Oslo10, Basel (2016), and Veins of Gypsum Mortar, Ashley, Berlin (2015).  Benevolent Nerves is his first solo exhibition in Latvia.

Support: Nordic Culture Point, VKN
Special thanks to Daria Melnikova!

Photos: Līga Spunde