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Three new commissioned works by ASCA PhD candidate Bo Wang: The Revolution Will Not Be Air-Conditioned | An Asian Ghost Story | Fountain of Interiors

The Revolution Will Not Be Air-Conditioned

two channel video, 27min, 2022

The title of this work was borrowed from social media comments in the midst of the 2019 Hong Kong anti-extradition protest, which originally references Black civil rights activist Gil Scott-Heron’s iconic 1971 poem “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”. The images of clashes between protestors and police in Hong Kong have constituted the most sensational memories of global turmoil in the last phase of pre-Covid age, which occurred, peculiarly, often against the backdrop of air-conditioned shopping malls. Taking this phenomenon as its point of departure, the work traces the architectural evolution of these retail complexes. Drawing from a range of historical references—including the Crystal Palace, built for the 1851 Great Exhibition in London; 19th-century terrarium prototypes used in the British Empire’s botanical trade; and 20th-century corporate salesforce training videos—the work reflects on how the mall as a spatial form evolved from its colonial root of conquest, to a machine of consumerism and social control. Yet, The Revolution Will Not Be Air-Conditioned also pays close attention to how the intended outcomes of spatial design can be subverted, turning such insulated and sanitized spaces into a ground for political action and dissent.

This work was commissioned by Junni Chen as part of the exhibition Lustrous Like Plastic.

Hessel Museum of Art
CCS Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson NY, USA
Apr 2 - May 29, 2022 

九龍東往事 An Asian Ghost Story 

film/installation, 37min, 2022

This film is about haunting memories of Asia's late 20th-century modernization. The story departs from a 1965 United States embargo on the hair trade, known as the "Communist Hair Ban". Yet, in every wig resides a ghost from the imperial past. This work was commissioned by CHAT (Centre for Heritage, Arts & Textile), Hong Kong, for the 2022 exhibition Spinning East Asia Series II: A Net (Dis)entangled, curated by Weiwei Wang.

CHAT (Centre for Heritage, Arts & Textile), Hong Kong
Apr 2 - Aug 7, 2022

Fountain of Interiors

Mixed media with fluorescent light, metal, mirror, plants, etc. 2022

This installation work is commissioned by Singapore Art Museum for the upcoming exhibition Lonely Vectors, curated by You Mi, Kenneth Tay, Joella Kiu. By responding to the concept of zoning and foregrounding the capitalist desire to "interiorize" the world, this work reflects on infrastructural modernity, through both its rhetorics and violences.

Singapore Art Museum 
Jun 3 - Sep 4, 2022 
Tanjong Pagar Distripark, Singapore