Say What I Have to Say Including This Text You Are Reading without Leaving a Trace and Therefore Never Feel Threatened
In November 2018, Wang Menmen asked her followers on Weibo, a popular Chinese social media platform, to participate in her project.
Each participant was asked to choose one word from the sentence “Say what I have to say including this text you are reading without leaving a trace and therefore never feel threatened”, and have it tattooed on their bodies. They were also asked to take a photo of themselves showing the tattoos, in a way where they feel most comfortable, creative, and represented.
The post reached one million Weibo users. Nearly 1,000 people singed up to participate, among whom twenty one were selected. They submitted the photos in the following month.
This project is a both intimate and collective effort to comment on censorship, where enough ambiguity is left by not specifying what is being said, and therefore survives censorship itself.
Shown in the photos are: SAY: Wang Siyu (Guangzhou) WHAT: Jin Ruomeng (Hangzhou) I: Zeng Xi (Shanghai) HAVE: Sun Xingcan (Chengdu) TO: Ping Guo (Shanghai) SAY: Wang Ziyi (Changsha) INCLUDING: Luo Ziyuan (Shanghai) THIS: Liu Zongshi (Ji'nan) TEXT: Chen Nanyu (Shanghai) YOU: Qiang Wei (Shanghai) ARE: Cen Yuling (Zhanjiang) READING: Chen Hongbin (Nanjing) WITHOUT: Han Zihan (Hong Kong) LEAVING: Li Xintong (Beijing) A: Zhou Yichen (Northampton, MA) TRACE: Li Zhixin (Hangzhou) AND: Chen Xi (Nanjing) THEREFORE: Huang Xiaoqian (Hangzhou) NEVER: Wei Anni (Zhengzhou) FEEL: Sun Yu (Dalian) THREATENED: Xuan Yuan (Wuhan)