Making Time Machine is a community art project in the Stone Nullah Lane where centralized with metal hard ware and car repairing shops. I asked around the neighbor to teach me to make a Time Machine for recording neighbour’s own story in Wan Chai.

Elements: Wan Chai / Stone Nullah Lane / electronic district / technician / neighborhood
Formula:  technicians networks+ asking + chance + accident + free school + free gift = time machine (recording machines motored by human-generated-power bicycle)

This begun with me another participating artist, Paul’s interviewed with the neighbour to recall the oral history of the district.

From the interview, we found that the people in neighbourhood have lots of specific knowledge, for instant, the owner of Yung Kee like to combine the waste materials from his dismantled job to a new product (e.g. he had made a mini elevator out of scrap metal before). Some of the technicians knows polish skill, some knows composing the engine part, some knows fixing the electronic part of the wheel… all are very specific. They know each other speciality in skills, but they may not interact with each other much.

So, from these master’s techniques, could I also make a machine to revitalize the memorial stories of these local old groups and project a future imagining story?

Thus the project aims to transform this lose social network into an innovative machine, in order to connect the neighbour through story-telling.

Therefor by asking how to make a Time Machine in 2 weeks time – a recording machines motored by human-generated-power bicycle, neighbourhood participants were invited to cycling the machine, it would then generate power for recharging a vintage music player to play the songs of 70s, at the same time a USB recorder will record their story about “where will you be 10 years from now”?

Project acknowledgement:
Wan Chai Visual Archive (Organizer)
Alvin YIP, Ling WONG (Curators)
Paul VLEESHOUWERS(artist)
Exhibition in-situ: 2011 Nov “ReIncarnating II: Futrue Teller”

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Making Time Machine, 2011, mixed media

做時光機

2011
混合媒介

元素:灣仔/石水渠街/電機社區/師傅/街坊
方程式:師傅網絡+一個問一個+偶遇+意外=研發成人力發電的錄音 「時光行動機」。

 

《做時光機》是一個社區藝術行動,於香港灣仔石水渠街這個遍滿五金和汽車維修店的社區進行,我問了很多街坊,請他們教我做一個「時光行動機」去紀錄大家的灣仔故仔。

開始自我和另一位藝術家Paul訪問街坊收到的口述歷史。在過程中,發現他們都有很專門的知識,例如潤記老闆經常接到清場的工作,蒐集到很多奇怪的雜物。他喜歡把這些廢品砌成新用品,他曾這樣做了一個迷你升降機。有些師傅專門修理汽車零件,有些是拋光的。他們了解區內各人所長,但互相不多往來。

於是想,我可否透過師傅們的技術,去研發一件幫助「說故事」的機器來轉化鬆散的社區網絡為彼此交換經驗的社區事件,藉此聯繫社區的陳年往事及投射對未來的想像?

由一個問題開始:「我想做時光行動機,用人力發電的」,用了兩星期問街坊和師傅製造方法,先是解決動力發電的問題。他們很多時只知道部分,然後介紹我找另一位街坊幫忙。就這樣一個問一個,最後得到玲記單車、恆利五金、生利木行、成記電業、標記五金、聯發五金等及友人Arthur的指引,把磁盤機,動力發電機和佳記雜貨廢棄的單車組裝成時光行動機。

用力氣換來對時間的想像,啟動對舊物的聯想(參加的街坊踏自行車時,便會推動車頭的磁盤機可播放70年代金曲),同時推動另一個USB錄音機錄音(回應問題:十年後你在何處?)。項目最後以攝影及錄音紀錄。

計劃鳴謝:
灣仔視集(展覽機構)
黃玲(策展人)
Paul VLEESHOUWERS(藝術家)
相關展覽:“生生(二)”2011年11月