gummi Chandelier ii in detail

gummi Chandelier ii in detail
Inside the gummi bear Chandelier Jr.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

New York City journey I

Feb. 2011

Visited NYC to install a piece at Broadway Gallery, plus visiting friends and some of my favorite art spaces.

Work first. Spend a few days installing the work, a series of wall sculptures in the shape of barnacle clusters with vignettes of islander lifestyle inside, lit by led lights. Mom's calligraphy studies was the background on the wall. This is a piece about the encrusted memory of my childhood in Taiwan, an island country where ocean strongly influence every aspect of our lives. I could not remember a moment when we didn't have the sea in our mind, the temperature of the ocean, breeze and typhoons from the sea, the animals in it, the tides, the smell, color, texture and sound of the water.

Collaborator choreographer Malini Srinivasan came for a preview. This was our first time meeting each other. I knew right away, I have been very lucky to have found her. Here is Malini peeking into the sculptures

We saw a sneak preview of what she has in mind for the performance. Prior to my arrival, I asked Malini if she could choreograph a short dance to the concept of islander culture and fishing villages.

Swimming, nature and ocean sound informed this dance. Malini is a third-generation Bharatanatyam dancer, choreographer and teacher. On the opening night, gallery visitors and all of us had the privilege to see her in action. It was a beautiful piece and quite a meditation for all of us, as the gallery owner Abra­ham Lubel­ski put it, "it is the same feeling when one watches sunset or sunrise. It is subtle yet powerful!"   

I had 6 days to locate a videographer for documenting the live performance after I arrived in NYC. Pulling out all the contacts from facebook, I found old friends from Calarts who had moved back to east coasts. Universe showered me with goof fortune once again as friends reached out helping me locating a videographer! Performance and video artist Run Shayo documented the whole performance. Next day, I picked up the DVD and set up the video projection so viewers can see what happened on the opening night.

This has been a growing experience for me. Some last minute emergencies where a cable was missing or a contact did not come thru. At the end, all turned out to be perfect. I was able to put a complicated piece together and learned again, there is no strange land, there are artists who are ready to be friends everywhere, well, at least in NYC! Thank you, NYC!

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