Public Art Project
Peace 1, 2001, Cast Bronze Bell and Cast Bronze Body
Overall Dimensions: 11 x 12 x 8 feet(335 x 366 x 244 cm)
Bell: Diameter: 56 in, Height: 81 in
Body: Length: 69 in, Width: 20 in, Depth: 12 in

Many ancient Chinese temples are located deep in the mountains and surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, where the general public rarely visits. This is thought to reflect the heavenly features of these temples, especially since the Chinese believe that mountains encourage spiritual peace. And all of these ancient temples have bells, whose special significance for Chinese temples is captured in the old Chinese saying: "Wherever there is a temple, there is a bell; wherever there is a bell, there is a temple." A temple bell evokes people’s yearning for peace of mind, physical well-being, and social harmony. That temple bell signifies the subjective attunement to a person’s own yearnings.

My installation, entitled "Peace Bell" or "Guarded Bell", addresses the significance of the Chinese temple bell. It utilizes the form of a traditional temple bell and assigns it a new meaning, based on my own personal story. In this installation, numerous people’s names are inscribed on the surface of the bell. All of the names are taken from people I know from the small village where I grew up. These name symbolize the genealogy of my family. Of these people, perhaps half of them have passed away and half of them are still alive. In the installation, a sculptured figure meant to resemble myself, rings the bell by its head. This act symbolizes the contact I have with my own life. Invoked by piercing, resonant bell sounds, I try to communicate with my ancestors. When the trace of human civilization starts to vanish with time, history anticipates the coming of the future. The bell sounds fills with hope and no longer mourns.