WHITE CHRYSANTHEMUMS AND PRINCE EDWARD | 白菊與太子
Solo Exhibition at SinArts Gallery, Den Haag
The starting point of the whole idea of the exhibition is based on a news photo, where people lay flowers as tribute to those who were hurt and (rumored to be) killed due to police brutality in Prince Edward metro station on 8.31.2019. Such tributes last for more than a year, until it was banned by the authorities. I consider such act of mourning as an act of resistance.
I made an installation with a mobile phone with the image, where people had to kneel down to examine the image on a small screen -- which also reflects how people witness the tragedy unfold through their gadgets.
Opposite to the installation is a series of white-flowers paintings, in response to the mourning flowers laid by people. The title of the series is Días y noches de amor y de guerra (Days and Nights of Love and War), which is borrowed from the book with the same title by the Uruguayan writer Eduardo Galeano. When I read his book I am convinced that the darkness of what Hong Kong people have been going through is not an exception -- in the past centuries, on the other side of the earth, there were people who had gone through the same suffering. But as shown in the book, no matter how hopeless the situation seems to be, there is always courage (and love) against the wicked. Resistance may take other forms, but it never stops.
To further address such universality, I made the video work Hypnotherapy for Amnesia. When tyrannies edit history to suit their needs, it is then our responsibility to remember the past. To remember, as well as to mourn, is an act of resistance. Employing the technique and language of hypnotherapy, this film attempts to fight totalitarian states-induced amnesia on the subconsciousness state, which is the battleground of ideologies.
And not only is the past needed to be accounted for -- those who are still suffering now (be those freedom/ justice/ righteousness-fighters, or victims of evil deeds) should also be acknowledged.
“Do not lose; never forget”.