Paradise Scaled VI
Cut paper garden, mirrored glass plinth
Sculpture: approximate length 50-55 cm; plinth: 85 L x 60 W x 80 H cm
Cai Studio Staff Exhibition
New York, NY
July 1 - August 15, 2014
A paper sculpture in the shape of an abstract garden or a dragon-like centipede stands atop a pedestal that has a partially reflective surface with a weathered-mirror effect. This sculpture is a three-dimensional drawing exercise for my upcoming installation opera, entitled Paradise Interrupted, where the music weaves ancient Chinese kun opera with Western operatic voices in a daring multidisciplinary experiment.
The story centers on a woman’s journey in search for an unobtainable ideal, at a moment in her life in which she is like Eve immediately after expulsion from the Garden of Eden. The garden stage design is an integral part of the advancement of the storyline and development of the protagonist. The physicality and design of the surreal garden that unfolds seemingly from nothing into a dynamic environment then back to an empty stage is inspired by the ephemeral quality of the traditional Chinese opera set design. This sculpture serves as one of many contemplations in this search for formal articulation within the continuum of the project.
Paradise Interrupted had a sneak preview at the Temple of Dendur at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in March 2015, world premiere in May 2015 at Spoleto Festival USA, Charleston, SC, and to Lincoln Center Festival, New York, in 2016.