Curated by the independent curator based in Hong Kong and the Netherlands Christina Li, Days Push Off Into Nights presents a series of situations that compose a common space of stillness.
The exhibition evokes a suspended period at the intersection of writing, solitude, and self-reflection, the artworks are born from and point to the necessary recesses often buried in our hurried lives. Pieced together, they form a collection of experiences that mark the passing of time, unfolding inside the exhibition space. In Days Push Off Into Nights visitors are invited to imagine and experience these rare contemplative moments on one’s own or in shared company.
These new and existing works by a host of international and local artists move beyond the static to become vessels of time that reference the artists’ experiences of solitude and repose: with Subway Writers, Moyra Davey transforms a series of photos of her encounters on the New York Metro into letter wrappers mailed to her friends; in Relief 2: 25 March 2009 – 6 Jan 2012, a wall installation of books artist Job Koelewijn has read aloud everyday for 45 minutes along with tapes of the recordings, we find new understanding of the physical act of reading as daily practice. Magdalen Wong offers a profound contemplation on duration in her installation of metallic tape that morphs and changes with the passing of time. Installed before a row of windows, each roll is slowly pulled down by the force of gravity, gradually concealing the outside world over the course of the exhibition.
Alongside the material temporal traces in the above situations, performative works emphasize the daily rhythms and transformations that become tangible when we take pause: Elmgreen & Dragset‘s new production, Hong Kong Diaries, showcases six weeks of daily diaries by five performers; SSS – Shore Scene Soundtrack by Cevdet Erek is performed by local musicians during the opening, and is later activated by audiences throughout the exhibition. In moving their hands across a carpet participants can recreate the sounds and movements of the sea, triggering personal seaside recollections. By negotiating the ephemeral, these works make palpable the otherwise elusive undertones within ordinary situations.
- Moyra Davey, Subway Writers, 2011 Images courtesy of Murray Guy, New York
- Magdalen Wong, Golden Curtain, 2011, metallic tape. Courtesy of the artist