Exhibition: 10 Dec 2016 – 22 Jan 2017
The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre
15 Nguyen U Di, Thao Dien, D.2, Ho Chi Minh City
From the organizer:
This project features photographs and an installation by Le Phi Long, accompanied by a video documentary directed by Le Phi Long, commissioned and produced by Madeleine Cao – founder of the social enterprise OpenM Corp.
Le Phi Long is always attuned to representations and interventions of site. Initially trained in interior design, he states that site plays an important role in influencing the audience’s experience with a photograph or installation. These objects, in return, can provide keys to challenge conventional assumptions about the site, or unlock discourses and social issues pertinent to it. One such issue that concerns him is the impact of human waste on the land. Thus, his project at The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre (The Factory), The Prolonged Interventions, explores both Lê’s fascination with site and his preoccupation with the overwhelming presence of waste in both urban and rural environments.
The photographic series Hidden Future is documentation of a site-specific project that Le produced as part of a larger environmental endeavor called ‘Clean Up the Beach’, organized by OpenM Corp. Situated on Ly Son Island, an increasingly popular travel destination in Quang Ngai Province, Vietnam, the production of these photographs was a
collaborative effort between Le and 70 volunteers to collect garbage around the island, sort it according to size, shape, and colors, and stitch the pieces together with rope to create a ‘trash’ nets that wraps around To Vo Gate – Ly Son’s iconic limerock archway created by volcano lava and worn out by sea waves over millions of years. The camera angle, in some of the photographs, mimics snapshots taken by tourists standing underneath To Vo Gate. In Le’s imagery however, the brightly colored net that consumes this local icon disrupts the popular scenic location, bringing to light the usually hidden problem of how a natural landmark is being suffocated by the artificial garbage left behind by locals and tourists. In Hidden Future, Le juxtaposes the natural wonder of Ly Son with the waste of human life, posing the question of ecological repercussions of modern consumer attitudes.
Content by Duong Manh Hung
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