On a recent trip to New York City, I had the chance to see a truly moving exhibit at the MoMA. Located on the first floor of the museum and visible from the four stories above, Song Dong's Project entitled Waste Not may not look like much at first glance. From a distance, it is seemingly just a collection of old junk, neatly organized into a thoughtful grid. I admit that I approached it with skepticism, expecting it to be a take on recycling by a hip artist from Generation Green.
This exhibit was conceived as a way to make all these seemingly useless items useful again as an art piece. It brought great joy to Song Dong's mother, who was happy to see that all of her efforts had paid off in the end. Sadly, she passed away shortly after the exhibit went up— but the material objects that represent her life (including the tiny frame of her home) are now on display at the MoMA until September 7th.