藕斷絲連

Clinging Fibre

A section of arrowroot is separated, but the clinging fibre remains; one’s love, like a lotus root, linked by fibres though divided. The relationships between Teochew people are easily cease to exist except in name; they hold the relationships by gathering regularly. It looks unnecessary but they delight in this type of behavior and never get tired of it.

 
The lotus, rooted in the lake, hided in the mud, linked with others by fibre.
Teochew people and lotus, they are really alike in this way. 
Digging the mud, digging the camouflage, I am trying to find out the explanation for myself.
 

There is often a gap between the reality and the appearance of things, even human-beings. It seems common in Chinese society, people are good at hiding their actual thoughts to the outside world, leaving spaces for others — Teochew people extremely follow this living principal for thousands of years. You might come to the glum conclusion that the Teochew community in China, is a bit strange to the outside world and driven by discord on the inside. Teochew people are always proud of their identities, maybe because of their outstanding trading skills and clannishnesses. But as a descendant of Teochew people, through my life experience, the doubt had accompanied me for many years — why they tightly hold their family ties even they are not as close as how they act to the outside world. The rationale of ‘Clinging Fibre’ is not to create a linear narrative of a family story but supposes to bring the audiences together with me going back the altered state of my own. ‘Clinging Fibre’ is a platform for the exchange of dialogue, artistic expression of understanding of family ties, and the documentation of present Teochew people. Driven by the expansion of thinking on interactions between lotus root’s characteristic and people’s personalities, the attempt is to investigate the awareness and esteem by discovering the relationships among community and the living surroundings. Also, ‘Clinging Fibre’ would try to reconcile the vagaries of memory and the emphasis of the influences from my lineage.