Three large-scale digital video projections, bamboo scaffolding, cardboard boxes. Commissioned by and exhibited at Videotage, Hong Kong. A cooperative project with Samson Young.

Two artists visit one another’s cities, collecting detritus: objects, sounds, images. They then construct their own version of what they’ve experienced, an abstracted experience of place, within a single white box. These mediated places act as stage sets, and gallery visitors become actors inhabiting them. This was a vision that Samson Young and I had for Foreign Exchange.

Eventually, the Hong Kong art space Videotage commissioned me to create a large installation based on my experience in seven days in Hong Kong. What impressed me most was the hectic pace of the city, which for me was summed up by the rhythms of the traffic lights. I spent a week looking for the quietest spots I could find in Hong Kong – many of which surprised me – then created a large installation incorporating video, sound, and the detritus of the sidewalk: bamboo scaffolding, cardboard boxes, old newspaper. Foreign Exchange reenacts my experience of Hong Kong in ways that surprised city residents.

A few months later, Samson came to Brown University, and created his experience of Providence, RI – Machines for Making Nothing.