Long Sleep Afrter Death
Ever wonder what is it like after death? Either there is a kind of existence after death – or there is not. We are carefully and tediously mapping the unknown territory of learning that has never been traveled. It’s like a wall blocking in the middle, cannot be seen or even touched. With this in mind, I wanted to break with the traditional characteristic of a monument, I want to remember people who are not remembered by other monuments; the quotidian and the overlooked.
When I stepped into this topic, I started to read Lao Tzu’s thought. As the first philosopher of Chinese, the doctrine of Laozi had influenced all the Chinese traditional culture. In chapter 33 of the Tao Te Ching, he raised the concept of “Those who die without perishing get longevity.” Lao Tzu has no faith in escaping death, but being remembered by one's fellow men is defeating it in a significant way. The life span of the human body is only a few decades, it’s impossible to achieve immortality.
But the human spirit can last forever, will affect people of today and future generations in the long run. In this artwork, because of its particularity, combined this with the environment - a catacomb beneath the church; the visitors stayed in a bleak and gloomy environment, while the impact on the visual and spiritual sensation. The title Long Sleep After Death is expresses my thought clear. I consider death is like falling asleep, his freedom and his physical body were trapped in the bricks, but his will and spirit can be everywhere. Because we are all ordinary people, we may remember those who no longer exist, or we may not.
In creation process of Long Sleep After Death; the main materials are 20cm skeleton and non-toxic resin. The resin casting mould was customized, because the size I wanted is not available on the market. As the result, the final size is 20cm (high) x 10cm (width) x 5cm (hight). Because the mold is bigger than usual, each skeleton brick needs to be poured three times to complete, after the pouring allow a few minutes for it to settle and the trapped air bubble to float towards the surface. Every layer need 12 hours to set. And finally, I have to deal with the rough edges, polished three times with different numbers of sandpapers. This is a very long process but it has been put into motion. The resulting skeleton brick is elaborate and require even greater attention to detail.
The most outstanding characteristic of this work in general is the repeat pattern. I would describe it as a one-of-a-kind work of art. Like I mentioned before, I want to remember people who are not remembered by other monuments. This artwork is to commemorate people, ordinary people.
Nele Azevedo’s Minimum Monument is a time based artwork.It represent a history, a nature; a past, and a present. After 2005 the Minimum Monument begins to be installed with hundreds of ice sculptures in different countries, Nele Azevedo received worldwide attention. The installation’s theme is about global climate change. But Azevedo also uses this facelessness to emphasize the unity of man, She said:“I celebrate the anonymous figure rather than any singularly powerful person.”