The National Museum of History presents snuff bottle art by the late Chinese artisan Suo Zhen-hai (索振海). Inside-Painted Masterpieces (神壺奇技) is 150 snuff bottles with intricate inch-tall birds, horses, people and splendid mountain views painted on the glass interior with a tiny curved brush. Decorated snuff bottles were used to hold powdered tobacco leaves during the Qing Dynasty, during which smoking tobacco was illegal.
■ National Museum of History, 49 Nanhai Rd, Taipei City (台北市南海路49號), tel: (02) 2361-0270. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10am to 6pm. General admission: NT$30
■ Until Jan. 19
Tu Pei-shih (杜珮詩) presents three offbeat animations in Making Fantasies (想像的製造). In the titular Making Fantasies (想像的製造), Tu tells a winsome but ultimately deceptive narrative using images “of truth”: documentary photographs by famous photographers. In King Kong (金剛), she stitches together clips from all the King Kong movies since 1933, creating a “best-of” video that highlights Hollywood’s advances in animation technology. Last Wills (遺願) features the last words of seven historic figures including Franz Kafka (“Kill me, or else you are a murderer!”) and Beethoven (“I shall hear in heaven.”) In lighthearted animation sequences, she recreates the speaker and the original intentions, or the secret wish, behind each famous last utterance.
■ Project Fulfill Art Space (就在藝術空間), 2, Alley 45, Ln 147, Xinyi Rd Sec 3, Taipei City (台北市信義路三段147巷45弄2號), tel: (02) 2707-6942. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 1pm to 7pm
■ Until Dec. 22
A Space Elsewhere (另一個空間) features oil paintings, installations and works on paper by Chiang Yomei (蔣友梅), former president Chiang Ching-kuo’s (蔣經國) oldest grandchild. She brings I Can See What I Am, an installation based on her redevelopment project for the Famen Temple complex in Xian, China. In paintings, Chiang layers colors so that the canvas is fluid and bright yet opaque, like the surface of a lake, and appears to change under the gaze. “The works reflect an ephemeral nature, emphasizing the elusiveness of identity, and the possibilities beyond boundaries,” according the gallery notes. Chiang is an artist and art historian who works in London.
■ 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
■ Opening reception tomorrow at 2:30pm. Until Dec. 29
Imaginary Landscapes II – Immortal Quest (想像的風景II — 不朽的追求) is a showcase for the 50 winning computer graphics, video art, installations and interactive works in a competition hosted by Ecole Professionnelle des Arts Contemporains (EPAC), a comic and game art college in Switzerland. EPAC invited students from Europe and Asia to submit works that investigate the issue of human death in a digitized society.
■ MOCA Studio Underground (地下實驗), Zhongshan Metro Mall B30/32/34, near Exit R9 (捷運中山地下街，近R9出口), tel: (02) 2552-3721. Free admission
■ Until Dec. 22
In Indexing the Moon (指月錄), conceptual and performance artist Shi Jin-hua (石晉華) questions the concept of the art gallery. Shi believes the objects contained within the exhibit can’t be art, but at most behave as indices of art that lies elsewhere. Shi coaxes viewers to this realization with photographs of buildings, penned notes and other pedestrian objects that make no claims to meaning within the gallery.
Mind Set Art Center, 16-1, Xinsheng S Rd Sec 3, Taipei City (台北市新生南路三段16-1號), tel: (02) 2365-6008. Tuesdays to Sundays 2pm to 7pm
Until Dec. 8
The Opposite Shore (對岸) presents several video installations and paintings by rising Chinese artist Wu Junyong (吳俊勇). In highly detailed though simply wrought animations, Wu updates ancient Chinese fables with contemporary slang to depict the absurdity of the human condition. The artist’s paintings show people participating in wacky exercises like slicing the neck of a dragon into steaks — a gently pointed metaphor for contemporary politics, particularly the manner in which it plays out on both sides of the Taiwan Strait.
■ Art Issue Projects (藝術計劃), 32, Ln 407, Tiding Blvd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市堤頂大道二段407巷32號), tel: (02) 2659-7737. Open daily from 11am to 6pm. Closed Mondays
■ Until Dec. 15