Video (6 mins 07 secs) , c-prints on aluminium, neon sign, vitrine of objects, 3-D printed PLA, costume, framed legal document
”In this work the artist creates a fictional production of J. S. Bach’s Coffee Cantata. The production is set in the Rio Del Oro Valley in the Valencia County of New Mexico, on a piece of land that the artist owns.
In 1732 Bach composed Scheigt stille, plaudert nicht, otherwise known as the Coffee Cantata. In Scheigt stille, plaudert nicht the soprano sings melodious praises of coffee, while her father forbids her from enjoying the caffeinated beverage. What underpins this strange composition is the conception at the time that coffee is an ‘evil drink’: the Prussian king condemned coffee drinking as disgusting, and urged his subjects to consume alcohol instead. The protagonist of this fictional production - Michael Kar Fai Young - owns and manages a caravan café (‘Old Reliable Coffee’) on this land. Daily at sunset, Michael turns his café into a jazz club and performs to an non-existent audience.
And about this piece of land: during the heyday of Hong Kong's economic miracle, the city’s nouveau riche invested in land properties in various locations around the globe. One of the stranger of these locations was the Rio Del Oro Valley. At the time, these Hong Kong investors were led to believe that NASA was soon to establish new facilities in the area, which would eventually lead to an increase in land value. The artist's father invested in a piece of land in Rio Del Oro in the 1980s under the artist's name. The promised NASA-induced boom never occurred, and these lands are now worth next to nothing.”