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What Draws us Together, What Drives Us Apart (2019)

HD video (23:43)

collaboration with Zoë Chao

commissioned by The Shed 

What Draws Us Together, What Drives Us Apart, explores sisterhood by stitching together reenactments of scenes between sisters from 12 mainstream American movies that Chao grew up watching with her mom and sister, Zoë. Together, the interracial Asian American sisters step into roles originally played by white women, with the scenes restaged in places where the two grew up. An affective exploration of conflict and solidarity between women, the Chaos reimagine and embody the many contradictions of race, gender, sexuality, and politics embedded within scripted sisterhood.


Performers: Zoë Chao, Maia Chao

Cinematography: Jack Mikesell, Sue Carroll, Maia Chao, Zoë Chao

Video Editing: Ian Faria, Maia Chao

Locations: Shot in the homes of Bruce Carroll, Phebe Chao, Roger Sorkin, Bob Carroll, Barbara Carroll

Special thanks: Josephine Devanbu, Jesse Firestone, the Asian American Arts Alliance, and Nina Katchadourian 

Dedicated to: Leroy Logan

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