Do You Think You Can Help Her Brother?

WerktitelDo You Think You Can Help Her Brother?
Entstehungsjahr2009 - 2008
    variable Dimensionen
    Neon Installation
Lichtoptische Faktoren
2017 - 2016AusstellungenMelbourneLink

This sentence came out of a text message I received on my phone, which was an advertisement for prostitutes that really made me sad. For a mere 3000 RMB, a girl was willing to sell her virginity to help her family. Although it was probably a fake, it is a form of communication that inevitably draws you into the sadness of the city. It’s like the opening pages for ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF SOLITUDEby Gabriel Garcia Marquez –it covers the emotions of all the Chinese people in their increasingly globalizing cities. I personally feel this text message epitomized one’s desire, sadness, and helplessness. Therefore I will never forget this message He An (22.07.2020)

Inspired by the city lights and tenebrous urban narratives of Beijing, He An’s installation Do You Think That You Can Help Her Brother? creates a form of urban poetry from retrieved heritage signage which is swiftly disappearing from the skyline due to the rapid transformation of Beijing’s urban environment.

Chinese characters clandestinely ‘gleaned’ from shopfronts and various sites throughout the city of Beijing tell a dark story about love, desire and power. Drawn from popular news stories and online social media, Do You Think That You Can Help Her Brother? combines found texts to create a narrative poem that relays the experience of marginalised labour workers, popular Chinese novels, the sex industry and criminal underground networks.

Constructed from fragments of text that appear in urban space, the narrative loosely translates as:

Ye Chang-gui says ‘Miho Yoshioka’s birthday is only one day before my birthday’. After a long time turning tricks [or whoring] with a young man, they fall in love. […] Do You Think That You Can Help Her, Brother?

Installed on the northern façade of ACCA’s iconic architecture, He An: Do You Think You Can Help Her Brother? is presented as a keynote public project for Asia TOPA, the inaugural festival of Asian-focused performance and culture launching in Melbourne in January 2017. (22.07.2020)

Besondere Merkmale Kunstwerkn/a