"I'll Be Your Busker" (只为你表演) (2013)

by Liu Dao

ARTIST: Liu Dao 六岛 MEDIA: RGB LED display, one-way glass, teakwood frame EDITION: Unique DATE: Made in island6, Shanghai 2013 SIZE: 41(W)×41(H)×5(D) cm | 16(W)×16(H)×2(D) inches TECH SPECS: 1×MWGS60A05-P1J (INPUT 100~240VAC@1.4A / OUTPUT 5V@6A) 2×RGB P5 HH-P5-015

Full Description

It was raining that night but he didn't seem to care. The cool falling water was illuminated under the streetlight and the steam coming up from the cold black street surrounded him like an eerie mist. Cars drove slowly by and the children in backseats pressed their faces to the window trying to catch a glimpse as they wiped their warm breath from the glass with their sleeves. The drunkards stumbled out from the darkly lit pubs and dull music momentarily spilled out on the streets while the smoke of half-lipped cigarettes and the old stale smell of beer lingered heavily around him. I felt as if he was performing for me but I knew better. He was out on this corner every night and I on the other, just watching. I started to imagine myself as part of his act, his performance needing the authentication of my sight. But as the bills flew freely into his upturned hat, I grew jealous and angry. The air became instantly heavy and the smoke oppressive as the adoring, stumbling crowd fawned on around him. He walked the tightrope of the sidewalk and turned to me while he silently mouthed, “I’ll be your busker”. I went back to him the next night, but he had vanished. I kept waiting.

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