a life displayed: song dong’s ‘waste not’

Song Dong: Waste Not

From the New York Times is this wonderful slideshow and related article of a thought-provoking exhibition in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. Created by the artist Song Dong, the exhibition displays the accumulated everyday possessions from the life of a Beijing woman, the artist’s mother Zhao Xiangyuan. Even the most ordinary and inconsequential items are displayed.

She was born in China in 1938 and died in Beijing in January. For nearly 60 years she lived in the city with her husband and two children in a tiny house crammed with domestic odds and ends — clothes, books, kitchen utensils, toiletries, school supplies, shopping bags, rice bowls, dolls — which were used, then recycled, then indiscriminately hoarded. Now the entire cache, every odd button and ballpoint pen, is at MoMA, along with Ms. Zhao’s fridge and bed…It is at once a record of a life, a history of a half-century of Chinese vernacular culture and a symbolic archive of impermanence.

Thank you to Brae for sending this to me!

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2 Comments on "a life displayed: song dong’s ‘waste not’"

  1. Kathy
    20/07/2009 at 2:48 am Permalink

    I love this post. Please oh please do not get rid of this blog – even if you update once every 6 months! It’s my little gateway into something beyond simply googling Beijing.


  1. [...] a life displayed: song dong’s ‘waste not Posted by ktetaichinh Filed in Uncategorized ...

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