Thai artist Nino Sarabutra laid down 100,000 hand-made miniature porcelain skulls on the floor and asked art gallery visitors to walk on them. With every step, visitors will be treading on skulls, which sets up the perfect background to dealing with their own mortality.
Sarabutra, trained in ceramic arts at a Bangkok university, asked her family, friends, neighbors, students - to help make the skulls. The craftmanship is quite striking: while each skull has the same general shape and size, it is also distinctly unique.
The exhibition, titled "What Will You Leave Behind?", also asked the gallery visitor to participiate by answering her question:
‘I want people to ask themselves how they live, what are they doing - if today was your last on earth, what will you leave behind?’
Sarabutra captured the visitors' answers and projected them on the gallery's wall as well as on her website. The answers range from the sublime "nothingness" to the cheeky "my body - for medical research." Mine would've been "a pile of debt" whereas Sarabutra's own would probably be "100,000 ceramic skulls no one would probably know what to do with."
At a recent exhibition at the Ardel Gallery of Modern Art in Bangkok, Sarabutra said, "I don’t see the skulls as images of fear or sadness. They are liberating: look at all the opportunities, all the lives you could live, how serious your life is. Then go out and make the most of it."
Take a look at more images over at Sarabutra's website.