Tash [alan lodge] | 05.05.2006 10:26 | Culture
A performance by the Gao Brothers from Beijing, at the Arboretum Park, Nottingham, held on
Sunday 30th April 2006 at 11:30 AM
As part of their global World Hug Day performances, internationally renowned Chinese artist brothers Gao Zhen and Gao Qiang invited folks to participate in the most ambitious event of the series to date; a group embrace of epic proportions representing the first ever mass hugging to be staged in the British Isles.
Volunteers took part in the performance were invited to come to Arboretum Park where they were directed with hundreds of others by the Gao Brothers to embark on a hearty fifteen minutes hug with a stranger, followed by one gigantic hugging cluster formed by the entire group, all accompanied by the music of J.S. Bach.
Speaking about their first performance of a group hug THE UTOPIA OF HUGGING (Shangdong Province, China, September 2000) the Gao Brothers explained:
"We invited some 150 volunteers, who were previously strangers to each other, to participate. We asked the participants to choose a person at random for a hug, which they would then do simultaneously with hundreds of other couples. We then asked everyone present to cluster into one big group hug. Since then, we personally have hugged hundreds of strangers, and organised group hugs amongst strangers in different public locations and in different ways all across China."
World Hug Day series will continue in Marseille on the 9th of June, running concurrently with a traveling photo exhibition, documenting all hug performances so far.
The event was followed by a press-conference / presentation with the Gao Brothers and their organsing partners from artists group Digital Art Projects at the nearby Waverley lecture theatre (Nottingham Trent University) at 12:30 PM.
For further information please visit:
CHINESE ARTISTS CROSS THE RED LINE, The Guardian, Saturday April 22:
The Utopia of Hugging comes to Nottingham through the pioneering NAN-NANA networking event.
Part of a-n's NAN event series, NAN-NANA takes networking artists networks into unexplored territory, with its unique focus on contributions from all attending groups.
NAN-NANA is brought to you by a team comprising key members of Reactor http://www.reactorweb.com and Stand Assembly http://www.standassembly.org
A video of the Nottingham Hug, online at: http://www.world-hug-day.net/Nottingham
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