As time defines history and events turn into memories, time itself again stands in the way to recall both as the constantly changing subjectiveness of presence determines the perspective of view onto the past. This is the main concept of Cheungvogl’s Seven Chambers Exhibition in Dalian, China, which is designed to cut the visitor through the exhibited art of the private collection and the occasional cultural and communal events out of the context of the presence to create a moment of individual reception, reflection and interaction with the long lasting history of China without any influence of singular materiality of temporary circumstances. More images and architect’s description after the break.
Seven Chambers creates the opportunity of a silent encounter with various objects and art pieces, documenting the long way of thousands years of Chinese history, leading to the day, which is today. The materiality of the physical context is left in the dark, whereas the objects stand artificially lit from above, mimicking the rays of light on a day somewhere in history that will not end, suggesting an individual timeless focus onto their appearance and unexplained aim of creation. Other than in conservative exhibitions, the purpose is not to showcase a set of art pieces and put these into the order of a catalogue, but to travel through time on a dark path, guided by the light, shining from chamber to chamber. The visitor is left alone with his individual reception and interpretation of cultural, religious, social or political expression and intention of the exhibits. 5000 years of history are taken out of the temporary reception and interpretation of political and economical currency to enable a personnel encounter with the heritage, which led to the present day.
In contrast to the timeless inside, a subliminal sound installation outside the seven chambers invites the visitor to experience and exercise body and mind in direct relation to its surroundings and practice Tai Chi Chuan, an elemental traditional Chinese understanding of coherency of individual and context.
As mind and body obviously stand in close coherency with its context, the path which led to the existing context often remains in the dark of our fading memories and forgotten history.