ON ONE SIDE: A YOUNG MAN WITH MUSTACHE, ONDINE

double-screen video, 20min, color, sound


I noticed Nikko on the first night of a world cruise, he was dancing. Nikko was the manager of entertainment department, he designs varied activities to keep passengers from getting bored.

To cross the Pacific Ocean took us eight days, when he’s off duty after midnight, we started to film on the deck using the same costumes and props from his daily work. The monolog was first based on numerous sources: diary of King George V about witnessing a ghost ship, police records of Bas Jan Ader, news from The Guardian “I haven't slept for 37 years“... However, Nikko's enormous fatigue from daily work defeated my script, I had to adapt his own stories (for example, how grandpa caught John Lennon’ sunglass in their last concert). In between the lines, I try to capture a ghost sailor, an obsessive narrator, who has been wandering outside the deck every night and knows all the stories from the ocean as if they’re his tattoos. The second video is adopted from iPhone clips which formed an blurry female figure appearing in Nikko’s storyline from time to time.

exhibition view, OCAT Shanghai

2015