I’m currently 3-month pregnant. While preparing for this project which discusses artists with multiple positions, I feel grateful that I could practice the role of motherhood. As many female artists may encounter at one point. I approach the pregnancy as if I’m involved in an art performance, as an artist and art administrator becoming a mother.
Curator became another title I hold besides artist and art administrator. Being both artist and art administrator inspired the concept of Considerate Creations, which is the first exhibition I curated at Taipei Artist Village, 2015. In Considerate Creations, I invited female artists that are both artist and art administrator, and the exhibition title is an implication that art administrators are the gentle operators behind the curtain. Considerate Creations generated a lot of feedback, since this “amphibious” lifestyle is very common among artists and the art world. Many artists naturally develop a more flexible type of career, since arts and culture sector covers a huge range of artistic practices, and selling artwork is no longer necessary in terms of art making. Cross–disciplinary practice is a common state, and contemporary artists are commonly acquired a diverse skillset. I categorized this group of art professionals, whose contribution cannot be overlooked, as “Chameleons artists”.
“Chameleons artist” is a global phenomenon in the art world, and it says a certain quality of this business. When administrators or other art professionals work as artists as well, everything involved in their job becomes equally fascinating as their art practices. They provide a novel viewpoint of various of issues, and the outcome is fluid and influential. Considerate Creations: Chameleons is a sequel of Considerate Creations, which expands the dialogue from Taiwan to New York, United States. And the first part of Considerate Creations: Chameleons took place successfully at Taiwan Academy in New York, as we invited three female artists live and work in New York. For the second part, we invite another three Taiwanese artists, which will be held at Gallery 456, New York. Besides discussing many the roles they have taken on, the exhibition is also related to issues like marital and parental relations.
In the many different sides of a “Chameleon artist”, motherhood is the hardest one for men to understand. An artist to be in this unique position exclusively for female, decided to embrace the role of a mother or wife deliberately; such experience in life could transform into a fountain of inspiration. After Tsai Hai-Ru became a mother, she shifted her attention from oneself to communicating with others gradually. She uses creating artwork as an interface between self-construction and connecting with the outside world. While handling her Father-in-law’s collection in 2016, she founded the long anticipated Haiton Art Center. Among positions like a mother, wife and more, Tsai’s goal is more than creating art. In the reflection of founding the art center, she also wants to alter subjects that often got neglected in the social discourse. Unfortunately, however reflecting the reality, Tsai cannot be at the exhibition because she is occupied with the role of a mother. She bravely interprets the struggle and grit of a female artist, just like her work No.Yes.Yes.No.
Chen Hui-Chiao has run IT Park for nearly three decades. Not being satisfied to simply focus on her own art, Chen is also like a mother looking after many children. In addition to the artistic value of her own creations, she joined forces with a group of artists to co-found a space run by artists. IT Park has become a responsibility close to her heart, and through the special quality of its space, the content of its art, and the role it plays in fostering criticism and discussion, it has made an indelible contribution to the development of Taiwanese contemporary art. Happily busy as both artist and director, she lives a rich, balanced life, but of course, this state of contentment has only been achieved through a host of tests and struggles. Her work is with simplicity and full of personal emotions, mirroring perhaps the clear consciousness beyond the loud and messy world. The intuitive aesthetics internalized with herself is fluently presented in many projects.
Currently working in the exhibition department of Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, artist Wang Te-Yu also teaches in University. As a part of her work, she often comes in contact with other artists and groups, and the succession of exhibitions she has organized has allowed her to absorb a diversity of insights. Unlike the dimension of thought at play when making art in isolation, when Wang focuses her creative energies on that unique moment of perception that takes place between viewer and artwork, the everyday work of art administration magically infuses her art with ever more bountiful visual perspectives. The people with which she interacts in her work, and the sensory experiences bound up with people, have naturally developed a special importance in her art.
Hu Nung-Hsin currently works in the Artist Studio Residency Program and New New Yorkers Program at the Queens Museum, New York; her practice strives to represent the relationship of inner self and the outside world. The experience of years of living in the multicultural New York city has transformed Hu’s work, especially working closely with local community. Her work was more about expressing the self-reflection of living abroad and being independent. And gradually it transformed into a learning process and deep concern for different cultures and diversity. A various of administrative positions have expanded the way she sees her own practice. Her work Corpus Callosum uses both the administrative and exhibiting areas in the gallery, presenting the challenges of switching roles between artist and art administrator in a physiologic angle. Wong Kit-Yi (Ali Wong) works at Asia Art Archive in New York, and she is also a conceptual artist. Switching between two roles, she calls herself Wong Kit-Yi when as an artist, and Ali Wong as an art administrator/curator; The self awareness of double identity weaves her works together. In this exhibition, she presents the same work differently in the narratives of two identities: Wong Kit-Yi and Ali Wong.
When one applies the uniqueness and professional training she/he possesses as an artist to the purpose of art administration and business management, it seems like a natural-born talent, as one puts to good effect the aesthetic cultivation she/he has internalized. Moreover, one’s vision and ambition are different from those of the non-artist, exhibiting irreplaceable intuition and judgment that have borne rich fruit. These “Chameleons artists” take on multiple roles to make sure that they can secure the pursuit of their dreams. It’s a statement of dedication to art, and a expectation of Considerate Creations. We look forward to seeing this movement, and this group of artists bringing more insights and positive value into the art world and beyond. And especially we salute to these gentle “Chameleons artists”.
Talk: Wednesday, June 21, 6:30 pm
Venue: Asia Art Archive in America, 43 Remsen Street (Garden Floor) Brooklyn, NY