Q&A: Bonnie Han Jones

We caught up with Catalytic artist profile Bonnie Han Jones in Providence where she is currently pursuing a doctorate at Brown University. Her current project explores the archival materials of transnational Korean adoptees and is informed by feminist, queer, and postcolonial theory, and the Black radical tradition. She’s also returned to, “music performance and collaboration post-pandemic. It has been inspiring, seeing the changes in how creative communities take care of one another.” Bonnie has a number of upcoming collaborations inside different creative communities including, a forthcoming Erstwhile Records release with Asha Sheshadri.

CS: What musicians and artists have you been looking at lately?

BJ: Some minds I’ve been sitting with this year who have influenced (and in some cases radically changed) the way I think about history, identity, and art. Jane Jin Kaisen, Danh Võ, Karen Barad, Margo Okazawa-Rey, Natasha Barrett, Salome Voegelin, Katherine McKittrick.

CS: Films and books you’ve been into lately? 

BJ: There’s many reasons why these have resonated with me over the past few years, one thing that connects them is their focus on sensation and ineffable truths:
Memoria” by Apichatpong Weerasethakul
A Thousand Times You Lose Your Treasure” by Hoa Nguyen

CS: Favorite record no one else has listened to?

BJ: 김대례 Kim Dae Re – 천명 (Supreme)

CS: Best thing you’ve seen on Youtube (recently)?

CS: Dream trio/quartet/quintet with historical figures?

BJ: Pauline Oliveros, Alice Coltrane and Buffy Sainte-Marie

CS: Last performance you saw that expanded the way you think about your own work?

BJ: This isn’t a performance per se, though there’s a recording of the release party at Issue Project Room. It’s an extraordinary book and audio release “The Clearing” by JJJJJerome Ellis 

CS: Record you most wish you had played on?

BJ: A tie between Matana Roberts, Coin Coin Chapter One: Gens de Couleur Libres (2011) and
Robert Ashley’s Automatic Writing (1996)

CS: Recording people would be most surprised you listen to?

BJ: I have a pretty wide listening taste – maybe people would be surprised about how many Alicia Keys songs that I both know and try to sing at karaoke.