‘break’ public performance explores childhood curiosities
Led by a trio of landscape architects — Daoyang Han, Peng Ding (Chaosteria), and Huadong Zhu — ‘Break’ is a peculiar public performance that took place on June 18, 2022, amid a cluster of hedges in an undisclosed city. The images depict Ding and Zhu lying on those hedges, breaking up the foliage with their bodies while looking up at the sky or lying flat on their stomach.
Explaining the nature of their performance, Ding writes: ‘As a child, I always imagined myself lying on top of thousands of golden flowers, facing the sky, and feeling the beauty of nature whenever I saw a large field of rapeseed flowers in the countryside. Years later, my childhood urge popped up when I saw the manicured hedges in the city, despite being vastly from the countryside. So one quiet night, I tried to lie down on the hedge, but I sank into it, wrapped in leaves, and when I looked up at the night sky, I felt that the whole world belonged to me at that moment.’
all images © Daoyang Han
adding wildnerness and disorder to a man-made landscape
In other words, the ‘Break’ public performance is a continuation of Ding’s (see more here) childhood fantasies, expressing his desire to break the rules and constraints in pursuit of his true self by overwhelming the regular shape of the hedge with his body. Helping him materialize his long-time curiosities is fellow performer Huadong Zhu (see more here); the entire performance was also documented by Daoyang Han (see more here).
Adding to his reflections, Han writes on Instagram: ‘Human as the external force interrupt the regular green belt, adding disorder, savagery, and wildnerness to the setting. It reflects the desire for natural growth, as if it was expressing the potential consciousness of breaking the order at the subjective level.’
Throughout, the trio made sure not to destroy the hedges with their body weight, successfully restoring the foliage to its original state once they were done shooting and performing.
photography: Daoyang Han
edited by: lea zeitoun | designboom