For Christine Sun Kim and other Deaf or disabled artists, navigating the art system’s accessibility gaps can pose significant challenges. Institutions, galleries, curators, and event organizers often find their requests too demanding because accessibility wasn’t built into the system from the start. As a result, this gap creates FOMO (fear of missing out) through their act of overlooking or not considering specific needs such as sign language interpretation or captions. This installation reflects on the fine line between asking and requesting. Kim often feels fearful of missing out and annoyed because she’s not being kept in the loop to the degree she requires, all while being expected to stay nice as a disabled artist.

A musical score normally includes information needed to play music according to specific notes, dynamics, and rhythms. If a score is seen as strict rules to adhere to or as mere recommendations depends on the performer and the end result might not even be to the composer’s liking.

Inspired by signing the word “score” in ASL, her project, “FOMO Scores,” features 15 canvases with handwritten requests. When signing the word “score” in American Sign Language (ASL), her dominant hand and forearm move from her left to right in the horizontal direction, with four fingers up and thumb down. Her project “FOMO Scores” consists of fifteen 142×82 cm “score” shaped canvases with text handwritten across, one “request” per canvas. Each of the fifteen stretched canvases has a shape that describes the movement of a signer’s arms and hands when making the sign described in the work’s title. The canvases have been enlarged to imposing sizes, encouraging spatial readings of them in relation to the viewer’s body and gallery architecture.

Even though she is the composer of these scores, they are often ignored or overlooked. Black canvas on a white wall sticks out and makes the written text clearly legible but she can never exercise full control over the guidelines she is providing.

The canvas shapes follow the outlines of the word signed in front of her body. Not only do they outline a specific space that is necessary for her to communicate, but they also come to represent how much she can request without the other party feeling overburdened. They were created as guidelines but ended up feeling like limits for her. She created outlines for communication but the other party often perceives them as her stepping out of line. The tone of the requests is courteous and professional but each request really is a disguised demand, trying to instruct people to respond to her requests.

These scores overall form an arc, much like the spatial arrangement of orchestral performers on the stage. Meanwhile, the dynamics in height subtly guide the audience’s view, resembling a recurring and universal state, akin to sunrises and sunsets.

While the pieces represent specific situations in her life, they still feel easily relatable for a large number of people and in a variety of social or professional situations. The black shapes on the walls can also read as voids out of which words emerge or into which words sink, which is often how digital communication feels.