Tuan Andrew Nguyen, The Island, 2017
The Island is single-channel video of roughly 40 minutes duration that transports viewers to a dystopian future, depicting what at first seems to be the last surviving man on Earth. Later, however, he encounters a United Nations scientist who has washed ashore following the world's final nuclear battle. This poignant short film was entirely shot on Pulau Bidong, a small island located off the coast of Malaysia. Notably, Pulau Bidong gained prominence as the largest and longest-operating refugee camp following the Vietnam War, accommodating approximately 250,000 individuals, including the artist and his family, from 1978 to 1991. Following the closure of the camp by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Pulau Bidong fell into a state of abandonment, gradually succumbing to nature's reclamation. Overgrown by lush jungle vegetation and adorned with decaying monuments and remnants, the island became a haunting testament to its turbulent past. Integrating archival footage from Bidong's historical era with a fictional narrative set in its envisioned future, Tuan Andrew Nguyen provocatively probes the intricate relationship between individuals and their connection to history, trauma, nationality, the nation-state and displacement. The story compels viewers to reflect on the enduring impact of historical events and the profound implications of displacement, urging a deeper understanding of the complexities surrounding identity, memory, and the collective human experience.
|Medium||Single-channel video, 2048 × 1080p, colour, 5.1 surround sound|
|Duration||42 minutes 5 seconds|
|Edition||of 5 + 2 APs|