In the heritage house Bait Hassan Mukhtar, Danh Vo presents Come to where the flavors are (2015), an installation based on two ongoing bodies of work that involve circuits of commerce, consumption and other more abstract forms of transmission. We The People (2010– ) is a full-scale reproduction of the Statue of Liberty fabricated near Shanghai by repeating the original technique of pounded copper repoussé. Taking a practical approach to the work, the artist keeps the statue unassembled in sections that fit into shipping containers, allowing for tailored presentations of the more than two hundred fifty pieces.
For SB12, Vo assembles the thirteen parts that comprise the statue’s ‘armpit’, which towers nine metres high.
The installation also includes dozens of cardboard cartons used to ship Marlboro cigarettes and Lipton tea. Explorations of function, value and transformation, these works begin with empty flattened boxes that are sent to Thailand. There, gold leaf is applied atop their logo designs, augmenting these discards and imbuing them with new value. Borrowing its title from the slogan from a well-known 1966 Marlboro commercial that pictures the American frontier, Come to where the flavors are intensifies the work’s conceptual play through a blend of tobacco, tea and the imagining of Lady Liberty’s alluring musk.
This project was part of Sharjah Biennial 12