Wang Gongxin Our Sky is Falling in! 2007

Wang Gongxin
Our Sky is Falling in! 2007
Video still
© Wang Gongxin

The development of new media art in China owes an enormous debt to the pioneering experiments undertaken by Wang Gongxin in the late 1990s, when contemporary art in China was barely a decade old and video still an emergent medium. The first to experiment with video beyond being a mere recording tool and the first to engage with visual effects, his new work for The Real Thing reflects the anxieties many feel in a rapidly changing society.

Our Sky is Falling In! is powerful in its simple narrative and staged scenario, in which an everyday family scene is unexpectedly disrupted as the ceiling begins to collapse upon them. Whilst a distinctly personal take on the vulnerability of contemporary existence, it is also an obvious and ominous reference to the continued helplessness of the individual against the global forces of progress and modernisation that are progressively shaping the social and economic realities of the New China.