Lawrence Li at Global Noise Online has been blogging regularly about the upcoming China Power Station, “A major exhibition of Chinese contemporary art, architecture and sound” that opens in a couple of days. The exhibition includes pretty much every artist in Guangzhou city and Guangdong Province, and many of the experimental sound artists from across China. I’d go and see it but I’m in the antipodes and afraid to leave my room unless I end up butchered, in a vat in an abandoned bank vault. Curator Ou Ning is also blogging frequently with pictures.
Battersea Power Station echoes post-industrial art venues in China and the works on show have been chosen to activate the enormous scale of its spaces. The exhibition will be filled with sound and moving images, arguably the most prolific and strongest type of work being created in China today. There are three floors to visit and the art will engage with each of these distinct areas. The unmissable and outstanding view from the third floor will offer a rare perspective of London. Two celebrated Chinese architects will define the space, demonstrating the potential of the building.
Unlike recent high-modernist industrial travelogues in which ailing former jewels-in-the-crown of the European heavy industry age are cut up and shipped to China to be reassembled, Battersea Power Station is remaining in Battersea and is going to be full of artists. Lots of them from Guangzhou.
欧宁 Ou Ning, along with a score of others including Global Noise Online’s 李如壹 Lawrence Li have formed Institute of Sound for curator Hans-Ulrich Obrist’s exhibition, China Power Station.
a long-term research group focused on the study, composing, presenting and publishing of geo-sonic phenomena. The group consists of sound artists, field-recordists, architects keen on exploring the relationship between sound and physical spaces, and writers interested in the sociological aspect of sound phenomena. With its “sound-as-the-sole-medium” approach, IOS tends to perceive and reflect upon our world with all the non-aural senses shutting down. By collecting and manipulating daily sounds, it attempts to explore the possibilities of sonic narration and the relationship between sound phenomena and the complex social reality. IOS encourages more field-recordists to collect environmental soundscape in China on a regular basis, so as to establish a large-volume sound archive. It will also experiment with alternative modes of distribution and promotion different from those of traditional music industry, such as the Internet as the platform of a larger-scale sharing of sound resources. (Text by Ou Ning, translated by Lawrence Li.)