Friday, March 28, 2008

Darren Almond Fire under Snow.

On a very wet and windy morning I went out to find the Parasol Unit Foundation for contemporary art. They are showing a selection of Darren Almonds work till 30th March, and I wanted to see his film In The Between. It is a 3 screen piece filmed in China and Tibet. The central screen shows Tibetan monks in Samye monastery the oldest monastery in Lhasa, at practice, chanting and sounding traditional instruments. The other 2 screens either side are showing prayer flags, views from the bullet train window of the new Chinese railway that runs across the highest plateau in the world,from China to Tibet and shots of the train.

Unfortunately this railway has been put through without consulting the Tibetan people, or looking at the environmental aspects of such a huge project. This railway, which the Chinese want to extend, strengthens Chinese military and political grip on Tibet. So I watched the film with a sense of profound sadness, is all the potential destruction of Tibet and it's people inevitable?

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