End of 2018, I’ve been invited along other French artists to do a residency at Shangjin, a small town in the center of China. The city and the surroundings were extremely rural but developing fast. Explosions were taking place constantly: highways, buildings and shops were created everywhere. We were part of this change as our contribution was to create art for a museum that would develop tourism in the area. The works and the museum has been made within 30 days.

Meanwhile the people were still washing their clothes in the river and cultivating every piece of land they could. They were using QR code for shopping but power cut was a commonplace. Those two worlds were coexisting in an uncertain balance but the hope of a new beginning and a better life was in prospect.

At this time, the possibility of a virus that would transform all our world was not even in the air, however the feeling of change was perceptible in every gaze. A year later, not too far from there, Covid19 started its propagation.

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Shangjin by Ayline Olukman

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