Between two worlds

Updated: 2014-07-22 08:07

By Xu Jingxi (China Daily)

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He visited Yunnan Nationalities Museum and Yunnan Nationalities Village in Kunming in June. He compared the museum and village to "Disneyland".

He watched Yi dance and saw display houses showing minority groups' architectural style. But he didn't have the opportunity to go to the mountains where the minority groups live, Wing says.

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"It's almost like going to a cultural zoo, which is sad on one hand, but on the other, it might encourage visitors to learn more about minority groups," he says.

The artist's focus on the universal conflict between the majority and minority as well as between traditions and modernization is shown in his Great Wall project on display in Guangzhou.

The series of photos record the street art project that Wing conducted in Beigao village of Beijing in 2012. He painted an Aboriginal flag on a wall of bricks, and the villagers later took away the bricks to build their temporary structures, which Wing says is symbolic of "taking away the traditional culture and building a new society about consumerism".

"The quality of these structures was not very good. I saw buildings being destroyed and rebuilt very fast. I went to Sydney for one week and came back to find a whole new part of the village had been built in that week," Wing says, adding that China is at a higher speed of urbanization than Australia.

"Mixed with other plain bricks, the colored bricks were separated and became the minority. Like modern society erasing traditional life, the bricks were covered by cement," Wing says.

"But even though you cannot see the colored bricks, they are still there.

"The memory of traditions is very important. We the younger generation must fight for traditional culture and make sure we never forget it, otherwise it will disappear."


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