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Vietnamese artist crosses Pacific Ocean by cargo boat to reach around the world

Vietnamese multimedia artist Tran Nguyen Uu Dam will embark on a performance trip by cargo boat from Vietnam to the US at the end of this month. The 30-day journey and performance along the coast of California will complete one small segment of the artist’s long-term, multi-phase work entitled Time Boomerang.

Launched by the artist in 2013, the project includes performances, installations and other forms of interactive art in various countries around the world.

The artist’s journey will be sponsored by the Orange County Museum of Art in the US and other organisations in addition to his own budget. He also used crowdfunding.

Vietnamese artist, Pacific Ocean, cargo boat, around the world, Tran Nguyen Uu Dam, performance trip, 30-day journey

Vietnamese artist Tran Nguyen Uu Dam will embark on his 30-day voyage across the Pacific Ocean by cargo boat from Việt Nam at the end of this month.

As part of Time Boomerang, Dam is travelling to oceans on five continents to deposit bronze models of his fingertips into the water.

Dam said he was inspired by stories about the East Sea. His original idea was to launch bronze fingertips to the north, south, west and east of Vietnam to symbolise ownership, control and protection. Since then he has expanded his idea to the whole globe, reflecting his thoughts about colonialism and imperialism.

“I cast my hand, fingers fully outstretched in my childhood measuring gesture, in metal," the artists wrote on Facebook. "When it was completed, I cut off the five fingertips and moved them away from the hand. Over a period of several years, I will place the fingertips in oceans in five different continents, symbolically extending my ability to measure (or mark new territories).”

In September 2015, Dam launched the first bronze fingertip into the waters of the Gulf of Bothnia in Europe. Two months later, he placed the second into the waters of Moreton Bay in Australia. California was chosen as the next destination for this August. The performance will complete the third part of Time Boomerang's second of eight phases.

The first phase was entitled "The Real Distances of Things Being Measured". Phase two is called "The New Conqueror with a Good Passport".

Dam said that although the project now extends to the rest of the world, its idea originated from Vietnam.

Born in the Central Highlands province of Kon Tum, Dam was trained as a sculptor at Ho Chi Minh City Fine Arts University. He then received a Bachelor of Art at the University of California, Los Angeles and a Master of Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts in New York.

Dam combines video, performance, photography, sculpture and new media, and his works have been exhibited internationally in such destinations as the Queensland Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane and the Asia Society in New York.

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Source: VNS/VNA

Vietnamese artist, Pacific Ocean, cargo boat, around the world, Tran Nguyen Uu Dam, performance trip, 30-day journey
 
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