Yuan Goang-ming is a pioneering video installation artist who is celebrated for his ability to evoke contemplation on human existence in the modern world through simple and poetic images. His works have been featured in numerous exhibitions including Venice Biennale, Liverpool Biennial, and Biennale de Lyon. Yuan is currently serving as the chairman of the School of Film and New Media of Taipei National University of the Arts.
When Yuan was a university student, he bought equipment to explore video art after viewing a museum exhibition. In 1984, he started creating video installations and won several domestic awards with "Fish on Dish," "Out of Position," and "The Reason of Insomnia."
In 1997, Yuan earned his master's degree from Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design in Germany, and began critically examining humanity's relationship with the environment, society, and world. In 2001, Yuan started developing the "City Disqualified" and "Human Disqualified" series. Unlike the video techniques he used in previous works, the series incorporated photography and image editing to explore human consciousness and sentiments in the digital era.
The two series reflect Yuan's contemplations on mass consumption and technology as well as the concept of time and space in modern life from a critical perspective, establishing Yuan's status as a versatile visual artist in Taiwan's contemporary media art scene.
Since 2007, Yuan shifted his focus to explore one's living environment. The "Disappearing Landscape" series, for example, recorded his home and the surrounding area by tilting cameras to explore time and memory. "An Uncanny Tomorrow," his 2014 solo exhibition, featured images of everyday life, ruins, and the Taiwanese legislative chamber overlaid with sounds and his voice, hinting upon the instability beneath the surface of daily life and the uncertainty of Taiwan's future.
From the theme of home to living environment, Yuan questions the quality of dwelling under the impact of globalization and envisions the challenges and anxiety of urban life. "An Uncanny Tomorrow" won the 2015 Taishin Arts Award for best exhibition of the year.
Through beautifully crafted images, Yuan uses symbolic metaphors and digital technologies to juxtapose flawless aesthetics with an unsettling sense of discomfort. Yuan notes that he doesn't intend to amaze viewers with technical skills; rather, he hopes to make such edits invisible by integrating technology deftly into his works to highlight the context and meanings that he has created.