Dreaming Exercise
Site Specific Interactive Video Installation
Cardboard box, a match microphone, Raspberry Pi, 7’’ display screen, 3D printed case (PLA Plastics), a video documenting a fire burnt at the backyard of Tutu Gallery, an “I-want”s prompt video, vocalized hopes and dreams
Dreaming site: 6.9 x 4.5 x 4.7 inches
Matchbox: 5.3 x 7.5 x 3.1 inches
Co-producer and technical support Yanxiu Luo

This site-specific interactive video installation is commissioned for this show Tu! Gift, Tu! Take curated by AGORA a show nodding to the act of exchange that’s connecting to the nature of the gallery space and the gifting experience during the holiday times.

Sitting down by Tutu’s fireplace, you will be greeted by a video stating all kinds of things “I want” rolling in karaoke subtitle effect. If you pick up the match mic from the matchbox and speak into it loud enough, a fire will start to flicker on the screen until your sentence ends.

This piece is inspired by the fairytale The Little Match Girl, where a girl saw her hopes and dreams and found temporary solace in the match flame on a cold Christmas Eve night. Every Lunar New Year when I visited my grandma’s as a kid, I spent long hours sitting by the stove fire—as the youngest kid with the most urbanized upbringing in the bigger family, I always felt out of place in a rural-setting family gathering, and that small block of fire was my shelter from complicated social occasions. “The house shelters daydreaming.” (Gaston Bachelard) And where you dream shall be where you feel at home. Not long ago, when a friend asked me what my dream kitchen is, I was scared by how lost I felt—for so long I have been prioritizing surviving, I haven’t dared to dream.

Therefore, I hope this piece can be a site for us to practice dreaming: to say out loud what we want, what we dream, what we hope for. When we hold the match mic and speak, we are the fire, and we are the dreams. The flame video on the screen is just our reflection.