Save the earth? Yes we can

Trash like aluminium cans is raining down on Mother Earth and killing her. The only way to save the planet is to change our habits.

That is the message behind Taiwan-born artist Chin Chih-yang's aptly named performance piece Kill Me Or Change, which was held at Taipei's Museum of Contemporary Art (Moca) last Saturday.

The free-admission solo exhibition aims to raise awareness of the importance of recycling, and get people to pay more attention to conserving the planet's resources.

It employs "an approach that resembles self-punishment and hopes to raise his audience's attention", a Moca press statement said.

About 1,000 people turned up to watch Mr Chin take the hit from more than 30,000 aluminium cans that were dropped on him from a giant net suspended above.

After about five minutes, Mr Chin ended up being buried under the cans. Volunteers helped to pull him out from under the mass of all that trash metal.

The contemporary artist did not wear a safety helmet or use any other safety equipment, but he emerged from the sea of trash seemingly unscathed.

However, an ambulance stood at the ready nearby, just in case he needed one.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 25, 2016, with the headline 'Save the earth? Yes we can'. Print Edition | Subscribe