Lee Mingwei in New Zealand

2016 sonic blossom auckland

Lee Mingwei in New Zealand

Chartwell supported Lee Mingwei and His Relations, at the Auckland Art Gallery, Toi o Tamaki, Auckland, New Zealand, from 5 November 2016 to 6 February 2017.

In 2016, Lee Mingwei showed a major body of his participatory work at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki. Among the projects was Sonic Blossom, supported by The Chartwell Trust. Lee’s projects involve varying degrees of participation from gallery visitors that occur before, during and after the exhibition and in the case of Sonic Blossom, gallery visitors were offered a gift of song.

For several weeks, singers from the University of Auckland’s Music Faculty sang to invited gallery visitors and their voices infiltrated in a moving, emotional way throughout the Gallery.

“In this project created for the inaugural exhibition of the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, South Korea, I wanted to use these songs as a transformative gift to the visitors who encounter these moving Lieder. Each singer has to learn one of the five chosen Lieder. During dedicated hours, the singer meanders in the gallery, finding a visitor that s/he thinks might enjoy receiving this sonic gift by approaching them with the question: ‘May I give you a gift of song?’ This is when the song is sung. This happens sporadically in time – the folding and unfolding of a ‘Sonic Blossom’." – Lee Mingwei