Started: 2020

Time/labour: ︎︎︎︎

Writers and translators: Sarah Rodigari, Sarah Goffman, Sophea Lerner, Tom Gill, ArtLabOva, Make or Break, Masayuki Kawai, Sumi Hayashi, with special thanks to Aki Hoashi.

bridge // care // time // archive // water // salt // labour // instruction // digital // sculpture // infrastructure


Image: Make or Break, Care for Bridges, 2020, image courtesy of Make or Break.
CARE FOR BRIDGES proposes acts of care for infrastructure in shared, civic space. The public is invited to gather in small groups on public bridges, where bodies and vehicles pass over roads, valleys or bodies of water, and closely observe what kinds of care, maintenance or attention these structures might need. Through undertaking acts of care, we reshape — gradually and incrementally — the relations of bodies and worlds, and the water that passes between, beneath and through.

Writers are commissioned to produce short speculative fictions that act as portals through which the work can be entered. Each story becomes a lens to see a place in a new way; a gentle prompt; a mental warm up for an action audiences are asked to perform. These stories can break down human and non-human boundaries, travel through space and time, and provide intimate glimpses into different lives and histories.

For the Yokohama Triennale, six companion ‘actions for bridges’ were proposed through image, storytelling and instruction. Delivered remotely in the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, this project addressed our changing relationship with public space and touch through live actions, online interventions and material components.

The project’s sculptural components included paper stacks, steel offcut mobiles and five large laser cut steel “standing illustrations” representing Yokohama bridges, which the public was invited to spray with sea water over the months of the Triennale: an act of care that also doubled as an act of destruction. An excerpt from the wall text as visitors entered the Yokohama Museum of Contemporary Art read:

Acts of care restore and protect,
but can erode, diminish, break down,
Stealing material away.

To care for an object in a museum
preserves, but also privileges access,
distances from touch,
stops that object living,
makes us value differently.

Go into the world, and be with her,
Crumbling, enduring.




Some examples of public actions for this project can be found on Instagram @careforbridges. Make or Break also contributed short video works to Raqs-curated series of Episōdos, which extended the footprint of the Triennale in space, time and a few other unknown dimensions.

Care for Bridges was first commissioned for the 2020 Yokohama Triennale “AFTERGLOW”, curated by Raqs Media Collective (Delhi). This project was assisted by the Australia Council for the Arts - International Arts Strategy Outcomes Fund. The installation was re-staged at Yokohama Meme Festival in Japan, as part of TPAM Fringe 2021.

Yokohama Triennale
Instagram: Care for Bridges
Episōdos Overview
“Episodo X”
“Episōdo 10”

Other media and publications:
Yokohama Triennale 2020 Official Catalog
Australia Council for the Arts
Universes in Universe
Kunstlicht Journal 41(4)