Picture: J.Richard. Installation belongs to Xu Bing and V&A Museum.
It opened on the 2d of November 2013 and will be available to visit for free until 2d of March 2014. The installation titled "Travelling to the Wonderland" is an idealised landscape inspired from Chinese landscape paintings, and therefore I consider it to be a Chinese garden. In the description of his work, the artist refers to a famous story by poet 陶渊明 Tao Yuanming (365–427), the Peach Blossom Spring (桃花源 Tao Hua Yuan).
To summarise the Peach Blossom Spring : A fisherman finds by chance the entrance to a wonderful world inside a cave as he is travelling in his boat. In this place, he briefly meets immortal beings living a quiet and idyllic life but as soon as he leaves the cave, he is incapable of finding the entrance again.
Numerous gardens in China contain references to this story, usually through calligraphy and poems as well as names. This does not seem surprising as the Peach Blossom Spring offers a strong symbol of the idealised life led in reclusion that many scholars seemed to aspire to in ancient China, and supposedly were trying to reproduce by building gardens.
You can visit the V&A website to find out more about the story behind the installation from Xu Bing himself, including a video. As for me, I wanted to point out a few interesting things I noticed during my brief visit of the installation just after it opened, on a clear evening.
Here are short videos of my visit: