Fri, Jun 08, 2018 - Page 14 News List

Art exhibition listings

By Sheryl Cheung  /  Contributing Reporter

Hung Yu-hao, Liquid Streetscape (2018).

Photo Courtesy of National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts

An exhibition about Chinese incense appreciation is currently on view at the National Palace Museum. Scents to the Heavens: A special Exhibition on Agarwood and the Culture of Incense features a selection of display objects, accessories and utensils associated with traditional and contemporary incense practices. The concept of “heavenly scent” mentioned in the title first appeared in a Northern Song Dynasty text about the culture of incense. The term refers to the unforgettable scent of high-grade incense, such as those made of agarwood, which is a resin-imbedded wood derived from aquilaria trees. These treasured trees are typically found in Southern China, Vietnam and other regions of Southeast Asia. Throughout history, agarwood incense has been favored in religious, cultural, and medicinal contexts, and a range of benefits has been attributed to its scent. The show features selections of agarwood sculptures, ornaments and finely crafted incense vessels from the palace collection. In a press release, the museum writes: “The show not only... offers [visitors] an opportunity to appreciate the... craftsmanship related to incense objects, but also [a chance] to explore the unforgettable scent this material, which has been likened to a heavenly fragrance.” Visit the show to discover how the museum fulfills this promise of ancient palace aromas that “enhance the aesthetics of life.”

■ National Palace Museum (故宮博物院), 221, Zhishan Rd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市至善路二段221號), tel: (02) 2881-2021. Open Sunday to Thursday from 8:30am to 6:30pm and Friday and Saturday from 8:30am to 9pm

■ Until Oct. 20

Raul Gasque is a Taipei-based writer and artist whose experimental practices take many forms, including journalism, photography, performance and workshops. His ongoing interests are located between intersections of anthropology, history, psychology and other social sciences. For the month of June, Gasque has set up a space at the Mexican cultural office that seeks to “establish an abstract conversation between two subjects: Mexico and Taiwan,” writes the artist. The interactive exhibition, Transcending Boundaries, is divided into two parts: a section for contemplation and a section for action and creativity. The first section features a selection of books by Taiwanese and Mexican writers, calligraphy and drawing notebooks and abstract objects that viewers are invited to smell, touch and contemplate. The second section is equipped with paper, crayons and canvas, which visitors are free to use. Through the act of using the materials provided, visitors are encouraged to “let flow any inspiration or stimulation” that has been generated from the first section of the show. The artist says this interactive project is borne out of the need for “communication schemes that are not linear or figurative.”

■ Mexican Trade Services Documentation and Cultural Office, 333, Keelung Rd, Sec 1, Taipei (台北市基隆路一段333號), tel: (02) 2757-6566, Open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm

■ Until June 29

Currently on view at G.Gallery is a two-person show Now and then, I find myself in a plain, and alter with a breeze, a glance by Sean Tseng (曾彥翔) and Sara Wu (吳依宣), each a recipient of the Judge Award at this year’s Wonder Foto Day, an international photography competition and fair held annually in Taipei. The works of Tseng and Wu surpass the conventional frameworks of photography and reflect upon everyday environments through multimedia practices, writes the gallery in a press release. Tseng’s A Walk in the Forest combines photography with sculptural forms. Inspired by high-rise buildings, the work consists of a group of cement pillars embedded with printed photographs of nature. The encounter of cement and photography creates a curious sculptural aesthetic of vulnerability and strength, nature and civilization, image and object. Wu’s The Dimension of Texture is a series of photographs that capture markings on used objects and superimposes them on different surfaces. The generation of new images opens up the possibility of new contexts and meanings through which the photographed subject can be understood, thus creating a connection between different realities and illusions.

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