‘site / shine / sight’ is a duo exhibition featuring collaboration between visual artist/filmmaker, Trương Quế Chi and architectural studio, vn-a. This is the first time that visual art and architecture comes together at The Factory, in an attempt to explore how elements of light can be communicated, perceived, interpreted and even manipulated within the context and conditions of a contemporary art space. They will transform the space of The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre into a dim maze, where all light emits from the various sculpture, installation and photography within the recesses of particularly placed, structurally specific walls. Such a staged arrangement of objects and architectural elements – the first event of its kind in Vietnam on this scale – seeks to create an atmosphere of a strange faraway place. The curious and ambiguous first encounter of a new place is akin to a field trip with an anthropological approach, whereby an artist, architect, researcher or missionary, maps a site as they discover and study an object, community, or territory. Within this project, the artists are curious of the process of discovery and interpretation, as the investigator – here the artists and also the audience – may find themselves lost at a new site. They will then learn to detect shape, character, or function of subject and object on-site, connecting and reading these ‘dots’ from their original contexts to their current surroundings at the Factory, such a context seeking an audience’s unbounded perspective. Initially this exhibition was inspired by the historical context of particular architecture and landscape in the Central Highlands of Vietnam, such as local housing and sacred buildings. Later, personal reflection and materials outside of this original context expand the projects’ formal and conceptual narratives.
Graduating from the Master of Film Studies program at The New Sorbonne University in Paris, Trương Quế Chi is an artist currently based in Vietnam. Tuấn Dũng Nguyễn and Hương Vũ – members of Bund Deutscher Architekten (BDA – Association of German Architects), Berlin branch – operate their studio, named ‘vn a’, between Berlin and Da Lat, Vietnam, winning second place at the VI Edition of the International Prize for Sacred Architecture in 2016.
This duo show between Trương Quế Chi and vn-a is a multilayered hermeneutic circle between light, space and object. Here, light sources integrate with the gallery structure, simultaneously deriving broader meaning for ideas of transformation, belief and transparency.
This exhibition is curated by Arlette Quynh-Anh Tran, with the weighty advice from architect Anh Cuong Nguyen.