Song Dong, ‘Printing on Water (Performance in the Lhasa River, Tibet, 1996) 印水’, 1996, Performance Art, Thirty-six chromogenic prints, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
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Song Dong

Printing on Water (Performance in the Lhasa River, Tibet, 1996) 印水, 1996

Thirty-six chromogenic prints
23 3/4 × 15 3/4 in
60.3 × 40 cm
About the work
Exhibition history
Provenance
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York

宋冬 印水
Each 23 3⁄4 × 15 3⁄4 in. (60.5 × 39.9 cm)

Medium
Image rights
Photographs by Eugenia Burnett Tinsley
Song Dong
Chinese, b. 1966
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In his wide-ranging practice, Song Dong explores ideas of memory, impermanence, and the value of human expression within the context of China’s rapidly changing society. In 2005 he first exhibited Waste Not, an installation showcasing more than 10,000 objects accumulated by his late mother—everything from pots to shoes to toothpaste tubes. The mass of what is essentially garbage is intended to show the small details of a human life and reference the futility of existence, a frequent theme in his performances, installations, videos, and paintings. Song sums up his worldview in the central maxim of his practice: "That left undone goes undone in vain; that which is done is done still in vain; that done in vain must still be done."

Song Dong, ‘Printing on Water (Performance in the Lhasa River, Tibet, 1996) 印水’, 1996, Performance Art, Thirty-six chromogenic prints, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Save
Save
View
View in room
Share
Share
About the work
Exhibition history
Provenance
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York

宋冬 印水
Each 23 3⁄4 × 15 3⁄4 in. (60.5 × 39.9 cm)

Medium
Image rights
Photographs by Eugenia Burnett Tinsley
Song Dong
Chinese, b. 1966
Follow

In his wide-ranging practice, Song Dong explores ideas of memory, impermanence, and the value of human expression within the context of China’s rapidly changing society. In 2005 he first exhibited Waste Not, an installation showcasing more than 10,000 objects accumulated by his late mother—everything from pots to shoes to toothpaste tubes. The mass of what is essentially garbage is intended to show the small details of a human life and reference the futility of existence, a frequent theme in his performances, installations, videos, and paintings. Song sums up his worldview in the central maxim of his practice: "That left undone goes undone in vain; that which is done is done still in vain; that done in vain must still be done."

Song Dong

Printing on Water (Performance in the Lhasa River, Tibet, 1996) 印水, 1996

Thirty-six chromogenic prints
23 3/4 × 15 3/4 in
60.3 × 40 cm
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