HANG FENG: PROJECT FOR Havana BIENNALE 2015
15 三月 2019

THE STAIRS (“Going up the Stairs”)

Temporary installation, paintings, 2015

– SPACE required: one room, not less than 100m2, more also ok, but not less, with a STAIR in it, or leading out of it (15 steps or better more), just an existing, ordinary stair people use (not a dead artwork to look at!), but it also should not be a to busy stair, perhaps a stair in a museum, which people use to go from one floor to the next, or a stair in a government building, any stair, where people go through, but don’t rush through (may be dangerous).

– one wall, next to the stairs, at least height:3m and length:5 m (to hang some paintings)

– WORK to be done in Cuba: 

1) add layers of plywood (or maybe carpet), each layer 0.5cm, to the steps of the stair in a safe way. first step: 1 layer, 0.5cm; second step: 2 layers, 1.0cm; 3rd, 3 layer, 1,5cm etc. till the stair is rather out of the usual shape, different from what people are used to use and so start to pay attention to it finally. 

(I would need assistance from local craftsman/carpenter for this part)

2) the second part of my project is to do the paintings which will be hang on the wall next to the stair (if not enough time in Cuba, I may bring this paintings from Shanghai, but much better if I can realize them in Cuba and react to the situation there, perhaps even work with local artist to this paintings. These paintings could remain in Cuba, best in the same location (but if not possible, other place also ok, or i can take back to China, also ok)

– TIME of stay/realize the project: around 3 weeks (prepare the steps of the stair, realize the paintings)

More explanation of my installation The Stairs

This installation was inspired by my abroad experience, when I had the art residency project in UK.I do believe many people also have such experiences, when people visit a foreign country, sometime our body and our feel will tell us the height of step of stair will tiny different than our own country, because the body has its own memory or called “abilities“, which is much better than our consciousness. Moreover, every people has such experiences: people walk on the ground/road, which seems flat, but if people walk through without attention, any tiny bump or pit will give us very strong reaction.

This work is for discussing about such human’s experiences, physically and mentally. People will experience their steps due to the increasing height of stair. Visually, when people stand at the front of this stair, because of the focus perspective (the object is big when near and small when far), the tiny height difference of steps will be easily ignored. Therefore, visually “no difference” will become bodily “big difference”, when people walk step by step to climb my stair. And at last, the height of the step of my stair exceeds human’s climb ability.

Through this work, my argument is as followed:

In a difficult world when people are thinking so hard about how to make a next, most important step, it is very important to pay attention also to small, seemingly unimportant things, to pay attention to what you perceive, to keep in touch with your feelings, train them, trust them, there are not the ‘great men’, the heroes who make history, put things on the right track, good changes will only happen if everybody is alert, keeps in touch with his feelings. China underwent huge changes in the last 30 years, so many things became better, the cities full of modern high rise, more food, cars, travels, but it is all for nothing if people loose touch with their feelings.