duration: 4 days, 6 hours each day
"Children's Biennale"; National Gallery Singapore; Singapore. 2017
Be Afraid Only of Standing Still (variation) is one part of a larger series exploring ideas of nomadism, movement, and travel. It places alongside each other text fragments of local schoolchildren’s stories of their ancestor migrations, and my grandmothers' dramatic escapes from communist China via cargo ship - with jewels tucked inside hair buns and sewn into the hems of their samfu.
Over a period of four days, I roamed the National Gallery adhering - using a concoction of human sweat and tears - text fragments of collective ancestor journeys onto surfaces of liminal spaces such as hallways, bridges, and corridors. As the moisture evaporated, the slips of texts fluttered off creating a new narrative of movement of their own. Visitors collected the slips as they discovered them, or rearranged them to rewrite histories and futures. Movement and instability are the crux of this ephemeral piece.
Costume by the nonpareil Annika-N.
photos by: Mavis Tan Zihua, Murni Khaliesah Binte Uda, Asghar Bin Abdullah