Xavier Cha


Ruthless Logic, 2018, still.

Image courtesy of the artist and  Empty Gallery.

abduct, 2015, stilI.
Image courtesy of the artist and 47 Canal

Untitled, 2012, four-channel video.
Image courtesy of the artist and 47 Canal

Untitled, 2012, four-channel video, still.
Image courtesy of the artist and 47 Canal

In The News, 2017, performance.
Image courtesy of the artist and 47 Canal

Xavier Cha’s performance-based works and videos grapple with architectures of subjectivity, illusions of agency, what it means to be human with a physical body in a capitalistic-digital age where we exist as consumer and product. Collaboration is central to the work. Specialized participants, generally performers in fields outside of the contemporary art world, play prominent roles in extracting the sublimated and magnifying an estranged or alienated human experience within inescapable systems of exchange, consumption, and communication. Xavier directs actors, dancers, or other professionals through focused, controlled scenarios, where the challenged expression of their expertise – often pushing performers to extremes – reveals the body as an enigmatic conduit, a malleable corporeal/psycho/social system. Attuned to ways in which the body is watched and conveyed, immersed within heightened circuits of surveillance, marketing, voyeurism and self- spectatorship, she examines how mediating frames – screens, sets, and the omnipotent lens of the camera – shape behaviors and refine gesture.

Cha was born and lives in Los Angeles. She received her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and MFA from UCLA. She has had recent solo exhibitions at Empty Gallery, Hong Kong (2018); the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (2016); 47 Canal, New York (2015, 2012); Aspect / Ratio, Chicago (2013); and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2011), and has staged large scale performance works at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (2017); Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland (2017); Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Barbara (2015); INOVA, Milwaukee (2015); Kunsthalle Düsseldorf (2014); the New Museum (2013), among many other international institutions. Cha received a Frieze Film Commission in 2015, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in 2012, and was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2014.


abduct, Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, Cleveland, OH
Feedback, 47 Canal, New York, NY
Aspect / Ratio, Chicago, IL
Xavier Cha, 47 Canal, New York, NY
Body Drama, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Front Room: Two-Way Mirror, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, MO
Third I, Taxter and Spengemann Gallery, New York, NY
Voicedoor, Taxter and Spengemann Gallery, New York, NY
Holiday Cruise!, Taxter and Spengemann Gallery, New York, NY


Video Narcissism, Highline Art, New York, NY
Then they form us, MCA Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA
Smart New World, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany
Meanwhile...Suddenly and Then, 12 Biennale de Lyon, France (catalogue)
First Among Equals: Fruit Machine, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA
New Age End of the World, Taxter & Spengemann, New York, NY
Arcadian Night, curated by Kalika Farmer and Andrea Hill, Sheffield, MA
Cleopatra's Presents..., Leo Koenig Projekte, New York, NY
Quadruple Consciousness, curated by Malik Gaines, Vox Populi, Philadelphia, PA
The Absolutely Other, The Kitchen, New York, NY
Second Nature: The Valentine-Adelson Collection at the Hammer, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA
Convention, MOCA North Miami, FL
Skin Jobs, Marc Selwyn Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Invisible Adversaries, Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art, Sunderland, England
PM Dawn, Taxter and Spengemann Gallery, New York, NY
Agency: Art and Advertising, McDonough Museum of Art, Youngstown State University
Residents, Espace Electra, Paris, France
Residents/Vidothque Mobile, Le Plateau, Paris, France
Sculpture Center Winter Gala Performance, The Sculpture Center, Long Island City, New York, NY
Uncertain States of America: Video Art in the Third Millenium, Moscow Biennale, Moscow, Russia