Inspired by the honorable Aung San Suu Kyi who fought for a democratic Burma (Myanmar) and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, creative artist Hong Yi, who goes by the nickname “Red” created an ephemeral portrait. Aung San Suu Kyi is often pictured with flowers in her hair because on the day he was assassinated, her father put fresh flowers behind her ear before walking out the door. Using 1,000 carnations in carefully placed plastic cups with varying amounts of water and red food dye to create different shades of color, nearly 20 hours of set-up time, and 40 hours for the saturation to fully develop, Red’s creation allowed Aung San Suu Kyi’s beautiful smile to shine through. The portrait measured 11.5 by 14.75 feet and took a month of flower dye experiments to get the plan ready. Although the piece only lasted about 5 days before the flowers started to wilt, Red brought awareness to a strong, compassionate, well-respected woman that many are unaware of.
According to the artist:
“ASSK is a woman who has sacrificed her personal happiness for her people. Therefore, I chose to use the colour red to represent love, passion, sacrifice and blood. This is the first time I’m using live objects – flowers – for my project…flowers, like humans, eventually die. This piece celebrates this little time we have here on earth called life.”