|Location||USA / Colorado|
|Residency||Anderson Ranch Arts Center|
The residency program at Anderson Ranch Arts Center was conducted via workshops. Workshops were arranged from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday. Such arrangement limited my personal freedom for art making, but at the same time forced me to interact with people from different cultures at the workshop. The time constraint made me feel like I was seeking light in a thin crack.
This situation, however, inspired much determination to do well. For instance, an instructor artist at a workshop emphasized the importance of sharing and participation in his own art practice. He also wanted us to communicate and talk about each other’s works during his workshop. I was therefore forced into starting my own English training camp where I spent most of my extra time looking up vocabularies, writing essays, and preparing materials for critiques.
In addition, each workshop participant had to complete an installation piece in his or her own small studio at the end of the session. I decided to present ‘a whole studio space’ as my final piece. I collected recycled cardboard boxes and made a small model of the studio, and then asked each participant to donate a piece of material that they used during the workshop. For instance, one person made a tent out of plastic bags and newspapers. I asked him to donate some of the materials and made a mini-tent for my piece.
I ended up making mini-versions of other peoples’ pieces in my final work. Everybody was satisfied with the final result but this was only a small beginning for me. I realized how important conversations with these people were to my work. Art opened up my closed window to an unfamiliar environment where I wanted to shut myself off from the rest of the world.