Qinmin Arts' PAPER: The Document Becomes Dance

In 105 AD, Han Dynasty eunuch (by the name of Cai Lun) made a mash of mulberry bark, rags, and fishnets, mimicking the mastication of wasps and bees to make paper.

A little more than 1,859 years later, modern technicians were forecasting the prospect of the paperless office, imagining our device-laden lives would forego the material record of information in favor of the bright present of our glowing screens. Though the letter has dwindled in the face of e-mail, texts, and tweets, paper is far from forgotten, encumbering mailboxes, wallets, grocery bags, and still the occasional volume of Keats — each displaying the authoritative heft of ink against the fragile translucence of one of the early tools of civilization.

Artist and choreographer Qinmin Liu, a native of Hunan, who recently trod the streets of San Francisco for eight hours clad in little more than grains of rice in a performance intended to create community in a nearly scandalous bid for contact, ruminates on the mutual fragility of paper and human life in her newest work, PAPER, on view June 6-7 at KUNST-STOFF arts.

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