Culture - NOMINEE: Jack Yong
Space Project 2088
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Dr Sheikh Muszaphar, the first Malaysian individual who traveled to space made a statement that resonated with me until today was;
“I looked out through the tiny window - and there it was, the unmistakable third rock from the sun we call earth, floating in the inky darkness of space. It was more beautiful that I could have imagined. My heart felt like it had stopped beating and my eyes didn’t even blink. I just looked in awe, amazed by the beauty of space. The moment was worth dying for.”
That statement did not only triggered my inner childhood dream to go space but refocus my thoughts on what it is to observe space beyond a spatio-temporal dimension of reality.
My understanding of the celestial space lies above me, guided by the abundance of photographs captured using sophisticated satellites and astronomical machines. As my fascination of traveling to space was dismissed by limitations, I’ve engaged a process of alternative vision that progressively shifted my periphery of view to a much familiar landscape and gravity – simultaneously re-channeling my focus to an epistemological foundation.
By entering several space facilities in Malaysia, I’ve garnered photographs that remind us not just of the representation of these machines and landscapes as functional objects – but an extensive reinterpretation of “space” on Earth.
Jack Yong’s photographs traverse amongst the disparate environments, fragmented nature and the duality of nature - culture dichotomy. Based in Malaysia, Jack explores the contrasts and contradictions of the delicate balance within urban life and expand the wonder of both natural and constructed elements in contemporary environment as a central focus in his artistic endeavours. He documents this permanent quest of transcendence as deviant documentary observations where the apparent objectivity interweave with semantic ambiguity.