Hongjohn Lin is an artist, writer and curator. Graduated from New York University in Arts and Humanities with Ph.D., he has participated in exhibitions including Taipei Biennial (2004), the Manchester Asian Triennial 2008, the Rotterdam Film Festival 2008, and the 2012 Taipei Biennial, Guangzhou Triennial(2015) , and China Asia Biennial(2014) . Lin was curator of the Taiwan Pavilion Atopia, Venice Biennial 2007, co-curator of 2010 Taipei Biennial (with Tirdad Zolghadr), and numerous curatorial projects such as Taichung’s The Good Place (2002) and Live Ammo(2012) . Lin is serving as Professor at the Taipei National University of the Arts. For the past 10 years, he has been working on project based on George Psalmanazar, A fake Taiwanese in the early Enlightenment.
He is interested in transdisciplinary arts, politics of aesthetics, and curating. His writings can be found in Artco magazine, Yishu magazine, international journals, and publications of Art as a Thinking Process(2010), Artistic Research(2012), Experimental Aesthetic(2014), Altering Archive: The Politics of Memory in Sinophone Cinemas and Image Culture(2017). He wrote the Introductions for Chinese edition of Art Power (Boris Groys) and Artificial Hells(Clair Bishop). His books in Chinese include Poetics of Curating (2018), Beyond the Boundary: Interdisciplinary Arts in Taiwan, Writings on Locality, Curating Subjects: Practices of Contemporary Exhibitions. He is now the editor for the online Journal, Curatography.
Shireen Seno is an artist and filmmaker whose work addresses memory, history, and image-making, often in relation to the idea of home. She is a recipient of the 2018 Thirteen Artists Award from the Cultural Center of the Philippines. She started out in film, shooting stills for Filipino director Lav Diaz before going on to direct her debut feature, Big Boy (2012). Shot entirely on Super 8, the film is about a boy whose parents believe the taller he is, the better. Her second film, Nervous Translation (2018), about a girl who finds out about a pen that can translate the thoughts and feelings of nervous people, won several awards and screened at MoMA as part of New Directors/New Films, at the Tate Modern as part of their Artists’ Cinema program, and at the Tokyo Photographic Art Museum as part of the Yebisu International Festival for Art & Alternative Visions. Her curatorial projects include Christian Tablazon’s solo exhibition And the World Thickens with Texture Instead of History; Takahiko Iimura’s Circle+Square in Manila with Merv Espina; INSTRUCTIONS: a video without video exhibit for PABLO Gallery’s 10th anniversary; and The Kalampag Tracking Agency, a program of experimental film and video from the Philippines over the past 30 years. She and John Torres run Los Otros, a Manila-based studio and platform dedicated to the intersections of film and art. They recently had their first solo exhibition together, a collaborative installation and screening program called Cloudy with a chance of coconuts at Portikus in Frankfurt. She is also part of Tito & Tita, a film and art collective whose work spans installation, film, photography and collective action. Seno is currently a Visiting Faculty member at the Philippine High School for the Arts.
Born in 1973, Taiwan, Kao Jun-Honn is an artist and cultural theorist. Kao has a PhD from Tainan National University of the Arts and is currently an adjunct associate professor at the Taipei National University of the Arts. Kao makes use of the human body, moving images, planned actions, and textual discourse as the media of his artistic creation. The artist is a longtime observer of issues related to history, war, bio-politics, Neoliberalism, East Asia, and indigenous peoples. Kao has held several solo and group exhibitions, participated in biennales both domestic and abroad since 1995, and has completed residency projects in locations including Hong Kong, France, and the UK. Kao’s works have been shortlisted and awarded in the Taishin Arts Award on numerous accounts, and his publications include Bubble Love, The Home Project, The Road Project, The Three-Mirror Lens of the Archipelagic Art Series, and Llyong Topa (tentative). Kao won awards including Best Non-Fiction Book and Book of the Year at the 2016 Golden Tripod Awards, and his documentary Llyong Topa was shortlisted for the 12th Taiwan International Documentary Festival.
Born in Taichung, Taiwan in 1961. Chien-Chi Chang earned his BA from Soochow University in 1984 and an MA from Indiana University in 1990. In 1995, Chang was elected to join Magnum Photos.
In his work, Chang makes manifest the abstract concepts of alienation and connection. Chang’s investigation of the ties that bind one person to another draws on his own deeply divided immigrant experience, first in the United States and later in Austria.
Chang has had steady history of solo and group exhibitions: The Chain was exhibited at La Biennale di Venezia (2001) and São Paulo Bienal (2002) and International Center of Photography Triennial, New York (2003). National Museum of Singapore held a mid-career survey exhibition for Chang, entitled Doubleness in 2008.
Born and raised in Taiwan, Tsao Liang-Pin is an artist based in Taipei, Taiwan. He holds an MFA degree from Pratt Institute, and his works have been exhibited internationally. Liang is the recipient of a Fulbright Taiwan grant, New York Residency Program sponsored by the Ministry of Culture Taiwan, and Pratt Institute scholarship among others. His recent project, Becoming /Taiwanese, investigates the relational tension between national history, transitional justice and value awareness in Taiwan, exploring its socio-cultural significance.
Liang also devotes himself to public service and community development, and has given lectures, conducted workshops and curated exhibitions at various cultural institutions and universities. In 2015, he published his first photobook, Sojourn, and has initiated a symposium project, Photo Talks, to help promote contemporary photography in Taiwan. In 2016, he established Lightbox Photo Library, a non-for-profit organization, as a way to preserve and promote cultural autonomy, intellectual freedom and diversity in Taiwanese photography community.
Liang Ting-Yu obtained his MA in Interdisciplinary Art Research from the Taipei National University of the Arts. His practice integrates fieldwork and research. Through actions and various media, his project-based works delve into conceptions of ghosts and spirits and how these are entangled with ideas from geography, history, memory and ethnic relations.
At present, his projects involve collections of images, the study of death and the paranormal, the drafting of images, and writing. His research has variously been presented through academic conferences, workshops, and essays in academic journals in the fields of cultural studies, history, and anthropology.
Zhuang Wubin is an author, curator, and artist, who focuses, through writing and exhibitions, on photography from Southeast Asia and Hong Kong. His research examines the relationship between photography and “Chineseness”, books as a site for the history of photography, and the links between photography and nationalism.
In 2010, Zhuang won the Netherland’s Prince Claus Award for his achievements. In 2017, he won the Lee Kong Chian fellowship from the National Library of Singapore and in 2019 won the Chinese research plan fellowship from the Robert H.N. Ho Family Foundation. He has been invited to participate in numerous residencies, including the Bandung Institute of Technology, Indonesia (2013), the Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong (2015 and 2018), and the Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan (2017).
He serves on the board of the Trans-Asia Photography Review and served as curator for the Chiang Mai Photo Festival in 2015, 2017, and 2020. In 2017, Zhuang began to cooperate with the Lumenvisum photography studio in Hong Kong to organize exhibitions on Southeast Asia. In 2016, he published Photography In Southeast Asia: A Survey through the National University of Singapore and in 2018 published Shifting Currents: Glimpses of a Changing Nation through the National Library of Singapore.
Chen Fei-Hao, born in 1985, holds an advanced degree from the Graduate Institute of Trans-disciplinary Arts of the Taipei National University of the Arts and a BA in journalism from Mingchuan University. Chen employs writing and conceptual photography and moving images to examine history, culture, and social change. He often combines images with installations, videos, and texts to probe the possibilities for convergence among different media. He was a participating artist in the 2016 Taipei Biennale as well as the recent exhibitions Jodori Khiang–Community Artfest at Taipei Artist Village (2017), Yao-Chi City: Taiwan Paranormal Literature and Contemporary Art Exhibition at Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab, Shattered Sanctity at the Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei and We Are Bound To Meet at Loop Alt Space in Seoul, Korea. Chen currently works and lives in Taipei, Taiwan.
Chen Chin-pao enrolled in the Department of Photography of School of Visual Arts in New York in 1996, and three years later earned his BFA degree with an award for outstanding achievement. Chen later earned an MFA degree from Taipei National University of the Arts, School of Fine Arts in 2013. As a photographer, he has focused on different aspects of photography since the beginning of his career. He first gained notice from his documentary portrait series A Moment of Beauty: Betel Nut Girls. His recent project Circumgyration deals with “pseudo memory” by taking fragments of memories from elementary school students and parents, then has the students “reenact” the scenes of memory in dramatic stage presentations. Heaven on Earth juxtaposes photographs of shrines, homes, and graves to depict Taiwan as a land shared by gods, humans and ghosts. His latest ongoing project, Ordinary Household depicts contemporary Taiwanese domestic life. Chen was awarded The Overseas Photographer Award at The 26th Higashikawa Award in 2008. He lives and works in New Taipei City, Taiwan.
Nowhere Island Journal (Huang Ying-jia, You Cheng-yan)
Nowhere Island Journal was started by Huang Ying-jia in 2017 in collaboration with artists You Cheng-yan and Gao Deng-hui with the goals of undertaking research, conducting fieldwork, and producing art projects.
In 2017, Nowhere Island Journal’s “Three Mice Nakashi Training Camp'' produced film screenings in locations around Taipei, including the Fuzhou Wetlands and the forests of Xindian. In 2018, they participated in the Mipaliw Land Art Festival and took an artist residency in Fengbin, Taidong County. Their “Tearfully Struggling” project sought to connect traditional ceremonies with cultural context and was displayed in the Cepo’ Art Center, the Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, the Waley Art Gallery. They were awarded the Outstanding Prize of the School of Fine Arts (Taipei National University of Arts) in 2019.
John Thomson, who traveled to and photographed Taiwan, published his travel memoir The Straits of Malacca, Indo-China and China or Ten years Travels, Adventures and Residence Abroad in 1875. He wrote: “I have endeavored to impart to the reader some share in the pleasure which I myself experience in my wanderings; but, at the same time, it has been my care so as to hold the mirror up to the gaze…” This “mirror” here is a metaphor for photography and the “reader” refers to his western readers. In other words, Thomson’s mirror echoes visual coloniality. The control of the image and its photographic techniques in the 19th century during the Japanese Occupation period precisely reflects the presentation of "domestication of the others" and "self-idealization" of the image produced in Taiwan. If Thomson’s narrative reveals the traces of colonial desire, the images reflected in his lens are the desire of the photographer. But these images allow for the colonized to gaze back, to more deeply draw connections between the relation of colonialism and control over photographic techniques and culture. This allows for the establishment of multilayered dialogue between the "to gaze", "being gazed” and "to gaze the being gazed".
Hold the Mirror up to His Gaze: the Early History of Photography in Taiwan (1869-1949) examines the power relations of photographic techniques, colonial experience, and modernity. It explores the context of photography prior to the middle of the 20th century in Taiwan. The exhibition features 600 precious images from the National Center of Photography and Images, also combining nine different artistic research projects, to act as a supplement or something like a footnote to the content. This acts serve as supplements to the exhibited photographs. In terms of display, it is presented in the form of Aby Warburg's Atlas Mnemosyne. Through the juxtaposition of montages, the state of high-density compression of a century’s Taiwanese photography is presented. The highly compressed diachronic structure attempts to emerge the possibility of the "hauntology" of the image. This allows us to reevaluate artistic techniques in terms of their politics, culture, and social history in the global scale. Both on implicit and explicit, a glimpse for the image of Taiwan appears in form of writings of light.