13.09 - 03.11.2024

ProtoZone 16

15.11 - 12.01.2025

ProtoZone 17

Shu Lea Cheang

Virus Becoming (6:30, 2022)


Virus Becoming (2022) is a 3D sketch for the birth of UKI the virus. It is derived from Cheang’s full length feature film UKI (2023), a Scifi Viral Alt-Reality cinema.


The full film is shown on the 1st of December from 20:40 as a double-feature with the earlier film IKU in a collaboration of Shedhalle with Porny Days Zurich at RiffRaff cinema.


Taking the plot from UKI, Virus Becoming follows the trajectory of Reiko, a defunct humanoid. Reiko was deemed redundant and dumped as a piece of electronic trash at the Etrashville by Genom Corporation. Reiko unpacks their electro-body parts in an attempt to reboot themselves back to existence. Hereby, they encounter the Etrashville’s inhabitants – the trans-mutants, the hackers, the coders, the migrants, the refugees and the native labourers. Reiko codes and is coded, code sexing code. Reiko emerges as UKI the virus.


3D avatar animation: Roland Lauth

Etrashville construct: Mathieu Marguerin

Music: Atau Tanaka & Oscar Martin


Shu Lea Cheang is an artist and filmmaker who engages in genre bending gender hacking art practices. Celebrated as a net art pioneer with BRANDON (1998 – 99), the first web art commissioned and collected by Guggenheim Museum, New York, Cheang represented Taiwan with mixed media installation, 3x3x6, at Venice Biennale 2019.


Crafting her own genre of Scifi New Queer Cinema, she has made 4 feature films, FRESH KILL(1994), I.K.U. (2000), FLUIDø (2017) and UKI (2023). In 2023, she is touring UKI at LAS Art Foundation (Berlin), Centre Pompidou (Paris) , MoMA (New York) and ICA (London) among other venues, also exhibiting RED PILL (2023) at Hope, Techno-Humanities (Museion, Italy) and UTTER (2023) at Attention After Technology (Trondheim, Norway).


Shedhalle – Shu Lea Cheang

Shu Lea Cheang, Virus Becoming, film still