concept & performance: River Lin
videography: DNA Photography
15 March 2015
at Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris
I arrived in Paris doing the residency at Cité internationale des Arts in February of 2015 when this city has just experienced the Charlie Hebdo attack.
People on streets look as usual until I encounter the police and army standing guard in the city centre, including around the Memorial de la Shoah, where I live next to and walk and pass by everyday. The presence of the police and army as well as their weapon is strongly reminding me the war is going on physically and ideologically.
How are people unaware of the never-ending pain until something goes wrong? In addition, what would you do IF something is wrong? It is as if you can’t change it and you accept it eventually. Let’s call it a necessary evil. Relating the context and relationship between the Charlie Hebdo attack and the Memorial de la Shoah, this performance conceives a process of how people find out where and when they're living in.
Departing from the Cité internationale des Arts, River Lin walks slowly and passes by the Memorial de la Shoah by carrying an altar with burning candles and hiding his eyes with hands. At the instant while the performer stops walking and the altar falls down in front of the signboard of Memorial de la Shoah where stands at the end of street, the audience realises what the path and travel might mean.