Nothing is “Free”

 
 Collaboration with Nerida Bourne, 2014, Variable Dimensions, Balloons and Chair, Exhibited at TAFA Gallery in China

Collaboration with Nerida Bourne, 2014, Variable Dimensions, Balloons and Chair, Exhibited at TAFA Gallery in China

 
 

This was an interactive, site specific performance. Film footage and photographs were collected as part of the performance documentation. 


This collaborative piece saw the transformation of the vendor culture in China, into a playful performative spectacle held within the ‘White Cube’. Taking and displacing an iconic part of China’s street life, this piece explores the significant consequences of the smog that blankets the landscape of China. The balloon conveys breath, an invaluable yet somewhat scarce commodity in China. As the street vendor attempts to earn a living through selling balloons, the vast disparity between professions becomes notable as we realise how unfeasible this would be in Australia.

The balloon wrapped bundles of oxygen being sold to the audience, also carry the irony and the confronting realization that breath, something that should essentially be free, has sadly become a commodity in polluted cities such as China.

 
Kate Darmody