Trying to Remember a Tree (iii) – The world will surely collapse, is a special outdoor light box installation by Singaporean artist Robert Zhao Renhui, presented in conjunction with Gillman Barracks’ 6th Anniversary x Art After Dark. The work is a series of 14 near life-size photographs, featuring a very old and large tree that collapsed near the artist’s home. In Singapore, trees are cut in sections to make their removal easier. The physical cuts by which the tree is sectioned echo but do not exactly correspond to how Zhao has edited and sequenced the images, suggesting that there might be different ways of “managing” nature, whether via park authorities or art. Placed in a natural environment with the forest serving as its backdrop, the lush greenery of Gillman Barrack’s forest and the bleakness of the monochrome artwork form a stark contrast, provoking viewers to reflect on the state of the natural environment in the present day.
This work was first presented at JIWA: Jakarta Biennale (2017), supported by the National Arts Council of Singapore and ShanghART Gallery.
Trying to remember a tree (iii) - The world will surely collapse, Robert Zhao Renhui, 2018; Image courtesy of the artist and ShanghART Singapore.