Public Program: Meet the Artist
Friday, September 24, 6-8pm
Saturday, September 25, 12-2pm
Aljira, a Center for Contemporary Art presents the second EmergeNEXT solo project by Emerge alumni Chee Wang Ng. In his mixed-media installation 9/11 Vigil, Ng presents a cross-cultural reflection on the loss experienced on September 11, 2001. The work deconstructs the American flag and consists of a large, red-striped bowl of rice with two deliberately placed chopsticks surrounded by blue, star-studded prayer candles and the sound of a Buddhist chant for salvation atop a small table. In this work Ng explores a symbolic aesthetic and relies on his signature iconic objects—bowl of rice and chopsticks—to represent an offering to God and the dead.
Nearly a quarter of the 3,000 lives lost during the World Trade Center tragedy were New Jersey residents. The project allows the viewer to contemplate what else may have been lost on this day— a sense of security or perhaps the compassionate nature we contribute to our humanity? Appropriately titled, the artist presents culturally significant objects as a personal narrative of grief for observance in a public space, just 1 year before the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
The Aljira installation (blue) is one of three identical installations concurrently on view at the Museum of Chinese in America (white) in lower Manhattan and the Godwin-Ternbach Museum (red) at Queens College, New York.