One day I was told I should have been a pig and that dogs are noble and should have been my brother. I was told that dragons shouldn’t like me but it didn’t matter as one day karma would turn me into a bird and then a snail. I was told monkeys would protect me from snakes and whales would save me from drowning. Naturally I thought I would marry a rooster but I was told I would fall in love with a horse. I was told that my mole would stop horses from finding me and that parting my hair in the middle would make my monkey and pig hate each other.
The sculptures above, by Mylyn Ngyuyen, were some of my favorite pieces at the Crossing Boundaries exhibit in the Sydney Town Hall. Inspired by the Lunar New Year celebrations, Crossing Boundaries showcases the local talent of Asian-Australian artists. And since 2014 is the year of the horse, equine references abounded.
Not all artists incorporated the zodiac into their work though. Jayanto Damanik’s piece Conversations was created entirely from used teabags that he had collected since 1997.
Tea has a special place for me and my family. Tea can also be served for ceremonies praying to The Universe and as an offering for reconnecting with The Dead – in the spiritual realm. I collected my tea bags from family and friends and each tea bag contains a memory. In ‘Conversations’, every tea bag tells a story of daily life’s grievances and joys.
Somchai Charoen’s installation Landmind was comprised of beautiful ceramic flowers that rested on lily pad-esque landmines. The individual pieces were arranged on the floor in a grid pattern, an uncomfortable mixture of military precision and the soft curves of nature.
This is probably the lamest selling point, but I was really happy that the gallery was open till 8pm. To put it into perspective, not even the mall is open that late on a Saturday! Crazy, right? In my mind, this is pretty much the perfect Sunday afternoon: siting out the afternoon heat with a late brunch and several cups of tea before riding over to Town Hall during the last hour of golden sunshine.
If only more places were open this late!
How to get to Sydney Town Hall: 483 George Street, Sydney NSW 2000
About: Crossing Boundaries
About: Sydney Chinese New Year