By Claudio Rainolter (Design, Zurich University of the Arts), Jiaming August Liao (Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong), Sijia Star Liu (Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong), Jingying Zhang (New Media Art, Taipei National University of the Arts)
The family or social unit,
occupying a permanent residence.
A house or flat,
considered as a commercial property.
A place where something flourishes,
is most typically found,
or from which it originates.
The district or country where one was born
or has settled on a long-term basis.
This is an invitation for the audience to think about what is home for themselves. We try to build up an immersive and intimate space for the audiences by sharing four stories picked up from our personally experience but slitted into pieces for one fragmentary narration surrounding in the space, by that the audiences can build up their own version of the storyline. We try to make a home model in-between ideal and reality by faking the real furnitures and installing an interactive scenario. The audiences can enter it without rules and distance; and do everything they want as cozy as at home. We try to slow down the pace of the people coming in and magnify the moment that pause their life for a simple question but hard to answer – What is home? Home can be a place or an objective that arise your emotion towards the self-identification and the self-growth. Home can be a sense of being or a shell that embrace you when you need it. Home can be the motherhood, the childhood, or the livelihood, or can be the continually memory construction within your life. Home can be everything but one thing floating with you.
After discussing what’s the meaning of Hong Konger to Hong Konger we found this question is hard to answer, as we seem like all are outsiders for Hong Kong. To figure out what is Hong Kong and what is not, we did a simple subjectively field study which is to find some place that looks like it can be everywhere but now existing in Hong Kong. We picked one afternoon wondering in the city and recorded down the samples of the city in our different points of view. The materials we also used as the ambient sound outside the window and the photos in the “family photo frames” in the final piece.
Then we tried to dive more deep into the surface of this question and found out another involved question, which is, what is the meaning of home? And what built ourselves up as us now? The question is related to everyone but also has a certain meaning as it’s site-specific to Hong Kong.
We as different individuals reasonably had different interpretations about “home”. For building up the concept each of us shared some slides of our passing life with the group. After the discussion we wrote down four stories which in the end become the basics of the sounds surrounding in the space. As faking the history story also interested us we tried to mix the truth and the delusion together in the storytelling.
Then we tried to combine the different versions of “home” to build up an ideal home space that perfectly mirrored in mind but may not existed in the real world.
For building the home model we also went to IKEA to look for some 2D/3D furniture models, and cut out the 2D furnitures from the booklet we found and combined them together to build our personal ideal 2D home then tried to projected them in the wall of the home, but as for balancing the integrity we finally gave up the 2D furnitures projection.
In another hand everyone figured out one object in the space close to their feeling towards home, which are a window with fireworks outside, a sofa with arms, an opened wine and a suitcase with fish roaming inside.
After we got the space in the venue we figured out there is a wall with fireplace shape, which we then used and combined with the camera and the projector to create an instant interactive reflection in the fireplace for the audiences. As to make the space more like a home we also added a TV as a glass to magnify the corner of the room, adjusted the light to fit the atmosphere and polished the room with more details such as the cushions, the green plant, the coat hanger near the entering door, and the family photos frames with the photos in-between Hong Kong and else where.
To read more about this group’s work process, please click here to read their portrait A day with….
Result/State of play
Finally it become an immersive intimate space installation with an fragmentary narration cutting from four “home” stories, a green plant and a coat hanger near the entering door, a TV in the corner looping a slide of a man’s life wearing and taking off the socks everyday, an interactive fireplace facing an armchair in the middle where the motion of the “fire” forthwith reacting to the action of the audience, a partially opened suitcase with some roaming fishes inside, a table with a wine lately opened and some glasses alongside, a family photo frame with the pictures shot in Hong Kong but like somewhere else near a window with the fireworks and the hilarities outside, and a light bulb hanging down from the ceiling giving the only brightness and warmth inside.
There is a feeling of comfort, of belonging, somehow even of being in charge.
This place is not even a place. Is it?
Manifested memories, like a diary.
Some would refer to it as an anchor in their lives or a haven on a shore.
Likewise, a fish floating in an ocean has its own meaning.
Can you find comfort in the current of the world?
From being there, to move away from it.
To be in constant movement.
Scattered in between.
Where shall we meet tonight?