Portal is extremely excited to invite you to participate in a new project, Caochangdi 404, by An Xiao, an American artist based in Beijing, on Saturday, September 24, 2011, from 4-5pm, at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, Sydney.
Caochangdi 404 is an online performance and installation connecting a Sydney audience with local residents and artists in Caochangdi, one of Beijing’s more famous art villages.
Drawing from the conceptual art tradition of Lawrence Weiner, Yoko Ono, Zhang Peili and Fluxus, Xiao will provide a set of simple instructions in both Mandarin and English for a conversational exchange between participants in both locations, utilising Skype, Twitter and Weibo.
In constructing this conceptual framework for exchange, Xiao seeks to address issues of connectivity in the 21st century by considering two barriers to contemporary communication: technological constraints and the basic, but ancient problem of language barrier.
Instructions from the artist
From the Artist:
Caochangdi 404 is ultimately about barriers. Even after crossing the wide Internet divide from Beijing to Sydney, a question still remains: To what extent is the technical barrier the largest challenge? The questions I’ve constructed for the exchange reflect the many challenges I witness on a daily basis between Mandarin sand non-Mandarin speakers in China, often resulting in a Dada-ist exercise in futility. The future is here–the portals can be made everyday thanks to communications technology–but how much can communication?
Caochangdi 404 is the second in a series of social media performances presented by Portal – an international, cross-platform project surveying the changing nature of art in the digital space.
We welcome you to join us in the gallery or online to participate in this performance.