Painter Hua Chien-chiang (華建強) works with gouache, a modified watercolor paint that’s opaque on the canvass. Gun & Suit (槍砲與西裝), his latest solo show, is six recent series that censure ways military might and government power are used in everyday life. In his paintings, the icon of the politician’s suit is just as dark as the gun. In his series Incisive Intent (犀利人心), tuxedoed men ride a bulldozer like it’s a tank. In Small Circle (小圈圈), humans are depicted as social creatures who seemingly can’t resist forming groups and maintaining the shape of those groups at gunpoint.
■ Aki Gallery (也趣藝廊), 141 Minzu W Rd, Taipei City (台北市民族西路141號), tel: (02) 2599-1171. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from noon to 6:30pm
■ Opening reception tomorrow at 3pm. Until Feb. 2
Tokyo Island (東京島) is a solo show featuring large photos of miniature urban scenes. Shingo Suzuki measured hundreds of real objects to create tiny models to scale. Then he assembled the pieces in detailed scenes — of a shopping mall, a subway interior and other parts of “Tokyo” — that are destroyed after he photographs them. The results are time capsules of the city he sees: unconnected spaces that are perfectly clean, devoid of people and remote.
■ 1839 Little Gallery (1839 小藝廊), B1, 120 Yanji St, Taipei City (台北市延吉街120號B1), tel: (02) 2778-8458. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 11am to 8pm
■ Until Dec. 29
Glorious Encounter (華麗的相會) is the latest of Metaphysical Art Gallery’s group shows for regional contemporary artists. On view are 14 pop artists from Taiwan, Japan and Korea with their colorful acrylic paintings of “adventure merging real and virtual,” according to the gallery notes. The show includes a handful of pieces in other media, such as a reconstructed half-Chinese, half-western vase by Yee Sookyung and Eddie Kang’s rag doll who sails through a sky-scape filled with turtles.
■ Metaphysical Art Gallery (形而上畫廊), 7F, 219, Dunhua S Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市敦化南路一段219號7樓), tel: (02) 2711-0055. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 11am to 6:30pm
■ Until Jan. 14
A Traveling Exhibition for Small Woodenware Creation (遊木民族-小木器巡迴特) brings together top Taiwanese contemporary carpenters. Over 20 artisan studios such as Smangus（意念工房）and Lo-lo Wood (樂樂木) present small ware such as lamps, clocks and toys like a pinball machine and rocking horse. The exhibition includes a series of woodcarving workshops and competitions. For more information, visit www2.ntcri.gov.tw/2013woodenware (Chinese only).
■ National Taiwan Craft Research and Development Institute (國立臺灣工藝研究發展中心), 573 Zhongzheng Rd, Nantou County (南投縣中正路573號), tel:(049) 233-4141, open Tuesdays to Sundays from 9am to 5pm
■ Until April 2
At Into Spotlight (亮相), ceramicist Lo Sen-hao (羅森豪) shows 50 of his modern tenmoku bowls (天目碗) that bear his signature dark glaze of local grasses, clay ashes and iron tempered at extremely high heat. Tenmoku, or iron glaze, was once popular for bowls used for tea in the Tang and Song dynasties. Later, the method was revived by monks in Japan and now forms part of traditional Japanese tea culture. Lo, an artist and professor at National Taipei University of Education, is known for a glaze that gives the bowl minute patterns and a rich luster that changes color when the piece is tilted.
■ 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. 12