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Participatory process for making a shared horizon with hundreds of participants


When I was working in the event industry, I always thought: can event experience go beyond the excitement of spectacles, and touch something deeper, something beautifully human? Over the past few years, a number of experiential experiments have been embarked upon at the annual MaD (Make a Difference) Forum. The occasion is a gathering of over one thousand attendees, coming from all over Asia to explore creativity for change.


Horizon was a process addressing the idea of sharing, and prompts a question: Can a thousand people create a horizon? Participants can get water from a sculptural set, whose interlinked structure keeps water leveled across all bottles. Meanwhile, people can also share water with one another in small glasses, thus possibly creating an equal horizon among everyone.


With a glass of water in his hand, one participant said it reminded him of holding a lit candle in church. One remarked that the process made her more attentive, re-learning her own pace, gesture and relationship with people and place. Another exclaimed that the project must have been a campaign to advocate communism.


Besides sharing water, there was a parallel mechanism for exchanging limited activity places. Some participants took part gladly. Some refused to cooperate. At the end, eight glasses were broken; a good deal of water was split. It was profoundly moving, and at other times frustrating when observing how the interaction unveiled. I looked into the glass, and suddenly recalled a line written by Japanese artist Rei Nato: “like a vessel that accepts nature as it is.”


The project is in collaboration with MaD (Make a Difference Institute)


Concept: Kingsley Ng
Videography + Music: Blue Whale
Woodwork: Lam Che
Production Coordinator: Lee Suet-Ying
Production Assistants: Cecilia Lee, Wong Ho-Yi, Ri Yu Special thanks: Leung Ching Wan Gigi, Hofi Man, Aster Ng, Rainnie So, Cindy Tang, Bellini Yu, Meipo Yuen, MaD 2014 Volunteer Team
Video Documentation: Eric Tsang

Made possible by the generous sponsorship from the Lane Crawford Joyce Group


2014 Kwai Tsing Theatre, Hong Kong
2018 Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Manchester, UK