[EVENT NEWS] The 14th Factory Opens In LA After Being Shut Down In Other Cities
Imagine walking into a room and coming face-to-face with a meteor crashing into the floor, frozen in a snapshot of destruction. Or maybe you walk outside and encounter a plane graveyard, reminiscent of a Kubrick flick. Sound intriguing? You bet your ass it does.
The 14th Factory is a monumental, multiple-media art installation (14 interlinked spaces stretching over 3 acres) that has transformed an empty industrial warehouse near downtown Los Angeles into a mythic universe created through video, installation, sculpture, sound, paintings, and live performance. Conceived by Hong Kong-based British artist Simon Birch and a global community of twenty interdisciplinary artists from China, Hong Kong, the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada, the exhibit weaves together elements of popular culture–science fiction, punk music, graphic novels, and film – “with critical re-examinations of social and historical narratives, especially interconnections between East and West”.
As you enter The 14th Factory, you are suddenly transformed into a central player in a collaboratively fabricated adventure that engages and unfolds, uniting individuals through the creative process and to each other. And at a time when we need it perhaps more than ever, the exhibition challenges the current political climate by celebrating creative diversity and unity and to overcome obstacles and challenges as a global society.
Creator Simon Birch gives some insight into the project,
“This is a very emotional time for people, rife with division, anger, frustration. Many people are feeling unstable and upended with the political climate. Given the current fragile state of the world, we need unity more than ever…and we need action.
If there is anywhere in America that makes sense for our project; right here, right now, it’s Los Angeles. As artists, we have a responsibility to reflect, react, engage but above all, to not stand by the sidelines. The 14th Factory is an action. The 14th Factory is like a world within our world that is opposite to the chaos but equally, reveals the chaos. And the project is therefore, a world that celebrates diversity, singularity and limitless possibility but also exposes darkness and hints at the dangers if we do nothing.
My hope for the 14th Factory is to bring a broad range of minds together, to uplift and inspire, ignite conversation, action and solutions but also to provoke. There are installations here that discuss love, loss, fear, pain, hope…our shared experience, but that also ask the question; as civilizations have risen and fallen, are we now at the brink of collapse or the start of a wonderful new chapter?
But beyond these elements, this duality, The 14th Factory is, we hope, a safe haven to bring people together under one roof, so that all may go on this journey, immerse in this experience and perhaps become transformed.”
In it’s exploration of interconnectedness between East and West, The 14th Factory alludes to its historical roots in the “Thirteen Factories” of the Canton region in eighteenth century China, during which designated trading quarters formed an establishment for European and Chinese traders.
Collaborating artists including Beijing multimedia and performance artist Cang Xin; Hong Kong‐based filmmaker Wing Shya; photographer and graphic designer Stanley Wong (anothermountainman); ceramic artist Sara Tse; New York composer Gary Gunn; UK video artists Scott Carthy and Doug Foster; British punk rockers Penny Rimbaud of the band Crass; Jello Biafra of the Dead Kennedys and Pauline Black of The Selector, who appear in paintings by Birch and in interviews within the project.
For those interested in experiencing the art right away, the project will be filming their documentary and promotional materials on site for the next 2-3 weeks, and guests can secure attendance via Eventbrite. If you do not want to be filmed, you will need to wait for a TBD date to see the space.