The Vacant Chair (Chiếc ghế trống)

Installation and Video
Dimensions variable
Bang Nhat Linh
Contemporary Art

The Vacant Chair
is a multi-layered video installation. It is an intimate narrative, where social issues derived from the modern history of a turbulent Vietnam are unveiled: the wounds, tolerance, optimism, as well as the special relationship amongst those who remain. From a broader angle, it suggests a universal sense of existence and death, particularly the limited nature of the human race… On the other hand, through the act of transforming a powerful symbol of war into a symbol of love and loss, the work steps out of its geographical context to tell a universal story of all humanity. The Vacant Chair, therefore, is a song of humanity, and for humanity…

The Vacant Chair is a popular song during the American Civil War written by George F. Root in 1861 based on a poem by Henry S. Washburn. The song signifies the loss and emptiness of those who lost their loved ones in the Civil War, it specially gained empathy from both the North and the South of the United States during the war. (Text courtesy of the artist)

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