With the support of the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts' 2019 Digital Art Creation Competition Program, a multimedia installation called "Once Lake — Field Now" by Kaohsiung-born artist Chen Han-sheng (陳漢聲) will be screened at the museum's Gallery 108 from May 4 through July 14.
In his curatorial statement, Chen explains that "Hudi (湖底)," or "bottom of lake," is the general named used by the people of his hometown Dashe (大社) when referring to Tsuiping Village (翠屏村), and "Jianshanjiao (尖山腳)," or "foot of a pointy hill," is the name of a small hill located near the 3rd Public Cemetery.
A plot of farmland next to Jianshanjiao was passed down in Chen's family since his grandfather's days, but his father had difficulty farming the land and chose to lease it out instead to a shepherd. As the grandson of possibly the family's last farmer, Chen decided to reinterpret his memories of that plot of land by projecting creative artwork and gathered objects, which were then juxtaposed with real-time images and animations.
A state of co-existence is thereby constructed, having risen from the artist's feelings of being confronted with something that can't be explained. To convey this unease, Chen contrasted animated images of traditional twinned flowers with realistic landscapes of his hometown. Divided by temporal differences, the installation requires the viewer to exert a certain degree of effort to align and sync the layers of imagery.
Chen, 31, is a Kaohsiung native who works with experimental animation and mixed media kinetic installations. Incorporating his own background and identity, his works often touch upon the themes of agriculture and the coexistence of humanity with nature. Responding to gender issues that have stacked up over the years, he has also organized several projects aimed at starting conversation through curation and art production.
‘Chen Han-sheng: Once Lake — Field Now’