Sun Yuan and Peng Yu, So Far, 2016. Image courtesy of Hyperallergic.
A gigantic metallic structure resembling a crashed airplane beckons from the second level of the vast Shanghai Power Station of Art that is host to the 11th edition of the Shanghai Biennale. Designed by the Chinese collective MouSen+MSG, the structure is titled The Great Chain of Being – Planet Trilogy (2016), and you can actually venture inside it. Embarking on a disorienting journey down a narrow, uneven pathway through dark cavernous spaces, you encounter a gigantic plant, robots, and ultimately a dystopic extraterrestrial world. The piece unsettles your perception, a running theme in this biennial, which is curated by Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula, and Shuddhabrata Sengupta, the Indian trio comprising the Raqs Media Collective.