Sowing the seeds

Tuesday 23 Feb 2010

Winter-worm Summer Herb Pavilion takes spotlight at Hong Kong waterfront

The “Winter-worm Summer Herb” pavilion is a flexible mobile structure set up at the waterfront promenade of Hong Kong within the framework of the current Hong Kong & Shenzhen Bi-city Biennale of Urbanism and Architecture.

Designed by Berlin based Hybrid Space Lab (Elizabeth Sikiaridi and Frans Vogelaar) and curated by the Museum of Site (MOST, HK / Andrew Lam), the pavilion consists of triangular plywood plates sown together with the help of cable binders. At a very low cost and low technology construction the pavilion is also a flexible mobile structure that can be very easily disassembled, transported, reassembled and sown together again.

Videos on urban issues are projected on the triangular crystalline structure of the pavilion's interior. It contains 9 video works from world’s acclaimed artists including Yang Yong, Jiang Zhe, Xu Tan, Eric Van Hove, Leung Meeping, Kwan Ng, Urbanus, and Hybrid Space Lab (Elizabeth Sikiaridi and Frans Vogelaar). The works focus on the 'heterotopia' situation in the transforming metropolis of Hong Kong and Shenzhen, in an era of post-colonial assimilation.

After the closing of the Biennale the pavilion will be set up at the Hong Kong Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre (March and April 2010) and at the Kwai Tsing Theatre in Hong Kong (May 2010), to travel afterwards as a mobile exhibition space around mainland China.

The pavilion will transgress boundaries by moving to a series of different locations for community education. The pavilions name refers to the highly symbolic Chinese medicinal herb "Summer-Grass Winter-Worm" that grows in a subversive, metabolic way, transgressing seasonal change. The "Summer-Grass Winter-Worm" herb forms when a parasitic fungus hijacks and devours the bodies of ghost moth larvae that have burrowed into the alpine soil for up to five years. It then steers their bodies to the surface so it can spread its spores. The fleeting, mutating nature of this herb is also corresponding to the new, ever-transforming condition of the many Asian world cities such as the Hong Kong/ Shenzhen metropolis at an era of post-colonial integration.

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