Dreamscape of the Qing Emperor

2022 Hong Kong, China
Coauthors: Jeffrey Shaw, Sarah Kenderdine, VFXNova

    Step into the captivating world of Dreamscape of the Qianlong Emperor, an art installation that immerses visitors in a poetic journey. This exhibit showcases a unique gallery featuring a circular couch, reminiscent of Qing dynasty design, crafted to hold twelve people. Those lying on the couch can gaze up at a remarkable circular video projection, five meters in width, displayed on the ceiling.

    Drawing inspiration from a poignant poem composed by the Qianlong Emperor after his wife Lady Fuca's passing, this impressive artwork comes to life through a collaboration with esteemed Chinese calligrapher Wang Dongling. The poem is not only visually presented but also narrated in both Cantonese and Putonghua.

    At its core, the artwork encapsulates the emperor's profound sorrow expressed in his poem. Visual elements in the video projection are drawn from existing artifacts and paintings from the Palace Museum. Additionally, the original poem, penned by the emperor himself, has been re-inscribed by Wang Dongling for this installation. The imagery within the video includes symbols such as dragons, phoenixes, butterflies, and other emblematic motifs deeply intertwined with Qing philosophy and sentiment. Through these visuals, the installation vividly conveys the intricate cultural and historical richness of Qing court life, providing insights into its ontologies, history, and cultural subtleties.

    Exhibition Record

    2023/07/02 - 06/30

    From Dawn to Dusk: Life in the Forbidden City, Hong Kong Palace Museum, Hong Kong, China