As C-LAB’s (臺灣當代文化實驗場) major thematic exhibition of the year, City Flip-Flop (城市震盪) focuses on art endeavors that engage with the city. Looking at creativity as a vehicle of urban renewal and exploration, the show engages with researchers, observers, artists and activists to investigate social norms, social and environmental possibilities and relationship between the individual, the community and the nation. The show has three city-related themes: its multilayered system of interests, including global capitalism and ideologies of progress; urban models of order and governance and hidden narratives beneath its surfaces; and ecologically-minded approaches to the city that perceive urban space as a sustainable body.
■ C-LAB (臺灣當代文化實驗場), 177, Jianguo S Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (臺北市大安區建國南路一段177號), tel: (02) 8773-5087. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 1pm to 4pm
■ Until Nov. 8
Photo Courtesy of Double Square Gallery
Florean Claar is a new-media artist based in Japan and Germany. With a background in sculpture and stage design, his multidisciplinary practice primarily consists of installation art and film. While the artist is well known for his monumental public sculptures, his solo exhibition, On First Sight (乍現) at Double Square Gallery (雙方藝廊), features mid to small-scale works from the last three years, including video installations that have rarely been shown. The show is inspired by Claar’s life experiences and finding commonality among different cultural contexts and tapping the power of intuition. The artist also draws inspiration from science fiction, its narratives of the future and imagined urban landscape.
■ Double Square Gallery (雙方藝廊), 28, Lane 770, Beian Road, Taipei City (台北市北安路770巷28號), tel: (02) 8501-2138. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10:30am to 6:30pm
■ Until Nov. 16
Photo Courtesy of Tina Keng Gallery
Tina Keng Gallery (耿畫廊) is showing Taipei-based artist Yao Jui-chung’s (姚瑞中) latest interpretations of Buddhist aesthetics in Vimala-bhumi. The title refers to a Buddhist term that describes a clear mind amidst chaos and confusion. “Once impure thoughts have been dismissed, one can begin the act of creation with renewed inspiration and pure vision,” reads the curatorial preface. Yao relates to such advice in his personal life with recent trials he has faced. Encountering variations of greed, jealousy and ignorance in the world, the artist is driven to gain a renewed perspective of life. The exhibition consists of recent large-scale paintings in his signature style of gold leaf and ink, reminiscent of the resplendent elegance of Buddhist temples in Taiwan.
■ Tina Keng Gallery (耿畫廊), 15, Ln 548, Ruiguang Rd, Taipei City (台北市瑞光路548巷15號), tel: (02) 2659-0798. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 7pm
■ Begins tomorrow; until Nov. 17
Photo Courtesy of C-LAB
Thai artist Tae Parvit creates paintings and drawings that feature collages of found images and fast, expressive strokes with open narratives. As part of his residency at Pon Dong, the artist stayed in Taiwan for one month this year, during which Parvit created a series of works that are presented today in his solo exhibition, Savage Garden. The artist references his surroundings as well as urban cultural avenues, including vintage magazines, merchandise from flea markets, online streaming music, street fashion, wrestling, video games and conversations with peers. The show is produced in collaboration with Bangkok’s Citycity Gallery. The opening tomorrow will include an appearance by a musical guest and an accompanying yoga asession.
■ Pon Ding (朋丁), 3F, 6, Ln 53, Zhongshan N Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市中山北路一段53巷6號3樓), tel: (02) 2537-7281. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 11am to 8pm
■ Until Nov. 10
Photo Courtesy of Pon Ding
Taipei Artist Village (台北國際藝術村) presents Inner Space, a group exhibition of its recent resident artists. The main focus of the show is an exploration of the self, in relation to the living conditions present in modern societies today. Topics such as Web addiction, mental health, familial relationships and women’s rights are prominently addressed in the show. Wang Lien-cheng’s (王連晟) Kinematics (運動學) is an installation of multiple tennis ball machines on the village’s rooftop garden. The machines generate repetitive movements that suggest daily exercise. Huang Chih-cheng’s (黃至正) Stranding (擱淺) is a meticulously made multimedia work that looks at the nature of life tinged with an unending sense of waiting.
■ Taipei Artist Village (台北國際藝術村), 7 Beiping E Rd, Taipei City (台北市北平東路7號), tel: (02) 3393-7377. Open Tuesday to Sunday from 11am to 9pm
■ Until Nov. 3
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Taiwan’s rapid economic development between the 1950s and the 1980s is often attributed to rational planning by highly-educated and impartial technocrats. Those who look at history through blue-tinted spectacles argue that, for much of the post-war period, the government was staffed by Chinese who fled China after the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lost the civil war “who had no property interests in Taiwan and no connections with a landlord class,” leaving “the KMT party-state more autonomous from societal influences than governments [elsewhere in East Asia],” writes Gaye Christoffersen in Market Economics and Political Change: Comparing China and Mexico. At the same
Certain historical statues have been disappearing in Thailand, but they are not effigies of colonialists or slave owners torn down by protesters. Instead, Thailand’s vanishing monuments celebrated leaders of the 1932 revolution that ended absolute monarchy in Thailand, who were once officially honored as national heroes and symbols of democracy. Reuters has identified at least six sites memorializing the People’s Party that led the revolution which have been removed or renamed in the past year. In most cases it is not known who took the statues down, although a military official said one was removed for new landscaping. Two army camps named after 1932
It’s impossible to write a book entirely in the Taokas language. There are only about 500 recorded words in the Aboriginal tongue, whose speakers shifted to Hoklo (also known as Taiwanese) generations ago while preserving certain Taokas phrases in their speech. “When I first started recording the language around 1997, I really had to jog the memories of the elders to find anything,” says Liu Chiu-yun (劉秋雲) a member of the Taokas community and a language researcher. The Taokas last month unveiled a picture book, Osubalaki, Balalong Ramut the community’s first-ever commercial publication using the language. The lavishly illustrated book