Tides of Sand and Steel is a large-scale kinetic installation of defensive wall architectures that utilizes industrial greenhouse fans to slowly move sections of sand in successive stages across the exhibition hall in Si Shang Art Museum.This work examines a counter narrative to the dominant desertification discourse in Ningxia, namely of how large swaths of desert are preemptively claimed for agricultural expansion. Tides of Sand and Steel references the process by which sand formations are actively flattened and redistributed while artificial environmental systems such as greenhouses are subsequently deployed in making the land yield under all conditions. Through it's architecture the work also calls to mind the various defensive barrier structures that are mobilized on the frontier of desert expansion.

This piece was first commissioned in 2017 as part of an exhibition with the same title at Si Shang Art Museum and actualized in collaboration with ADL.

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