Dust Prints: A Diasporic Daily Practice

Hong Kong is under countdown. Dust Prints: A Diasporic Daily Practice tracks the remaining half of the Hong Kong handover as a British colony back to China, a 50 year process which culminates in 2047. In anticipation of a nationhood death certificate issued July 1st 2047, Miranda Zhen-Yao is making one cyanotype a day for the next 25 years.

Born the same year the handover began in 1997, Dust Prints is a durational piece that moves at the pace of life itself– in theory, it will go on until I am 50. Being from Hong Kong, it is difficult knowing it will soon not exist in a recognizable way. I see my work, as Theresa Hak Kyung Cha says, as a “realization of the imprint, the inscription etched from the experience of leaving.”

How does a place switch its meaning to become something else? And, how can we hold on to a day? My commitment to Dust Prints concretized when I read “Hong Kong will be the first postmodern city to die”. While Tiffany Sia’s claim is devastating, I believe Dust Prints can attend to this emerging sense of grief as it transforms the anxiety of pending nation-loss into poetic evidence of Hong Kong beyond its borders.