PREVIEW EXHIBITION PHOTOS AND PROJECT CONCEPTS
CHAI Min-leong

Withering Flower

thinking of castrating

without blood

painlessly

why is the wound not round?

in need of a bandage

to conceal

emptiness

thinking of “The River”

why is the film rectangular?

sickly son

dark and wet tub

coming across his father

without knowing each other

embracing

he helps him beat it out

thinking of the short story Withering Flower

Chang Ai-ling writes about a young girl, Chuan-Chung

she fell in love with a young doctor

after the first date

she was confined in illness

he becomes her doctor

injecting her with shots

she becomes thinner and thinner day after day

her body escapes at his finger tips

as in a radio drama

*Poem by artist describes BMoCA work, and shares in title

Chai Min-leong’s Withering Flower consists of three works: a bronze statue of Chiang Kei-shek transplanted from Taipei to an underground bunker/lookout point on the water facing in the same direction as guns did for years towards China. The second component will be three performances during the opening ceremonies based on a famous short story by Chang Ai-lin about the in which a young girl withers in suffering (alluded to in the poem above).  Recordings of the performances will be projected in the bunker of the staging for the duration of BMoCA. The third component will be a screening of an excerpt from Chai’s famous film, Golden Lion award winning The River, in which a father and son have sex in a bathhouse unwittingly.

CHANG Yongho

One Divided by Two

Inspired by the loss of Kinmen bunkers’ protective function since demilitarization in the early ‘90s, Chang Yongho will cut a bunker into two halves, transforming the defunct stark shell into a conceptual space that embodies the traditional Chinese Ying and Yang.

DA LUN WEI Art Squad

The Other Side of the Coast

Teaming up as Da Lun Wei Art Squad, He Shi and Yan San’s Other Side aims to “uncover and discover the truth, reconcile past entanglements and face the future.” The Other Side of the Coast is a research project tracing lives and fates of Chinese and Taiwanese defectors after 1949, when Nationalists established Taiwan.  Documentation of the defectors’ stories will be exhibited in a bunker.

FEI Dawei

The Childrens’ Bookstore Exchange Program

Art critic Fei Dawei’s first artwork will be The Childrens’ Bookstore Exchange Program in the Kinmen Government Cultural Center, where an extensive library of art books will be on display and available in exchange for a critical essay on BMoCA authored by a Kinmen child. The Exchange is designed to encourage the local children to ultimately understand BMoCA in the broader context of the history of art, so that they may understand the events on their home island from a more worldly perspective. The childrens’ essays will be published in local Kinmen newspapers, giving the children a public voice in the community; the essays will be posted on the Internet, allowing the children to participate in the international discourse surrounding BMoCA, finally, a selection of essays will be included in the BMoCA catalogue.

LEE Mingwei

Shuito Legend

Sited in one of Kinmen’s historic villages, Shuito Legend provides visitors with a map that guides them through an area that local traditional housing has survived.  Triggered by motion sensors, as the visitor enters a home speakers will retell the story of the family who lived there, revealing the multifaceted history of Kinmen beyond its former military function.

LEE Shi-Chi Studio

War Bets on Peace

Lee Shi-Chi comes from the infamous village of Guningtou, Kinmen where, on August 23rd 1958, the Chinese dropped over 400,000 missiles and 10,000 Kinmen citizens lost their lives. Using Kinmen Sorguem wine bottles, Lee Shi-Chi creates an outdoor canopy of 823 bottles (signifying August 23) outside of the bunker; inside, there will be live gambling to signify Kinmen’s uncertain future.
LIN Hsing-Yueh

Kinmen Pyramid

Kinmen Pyramid proposes using the bottles of the celebrated Kinmen sorghum wine, the island’s largest industry, and retired artilleries as components for what would be Taiwan’s largest monument.  A tree will grow up the center and out of the top of the six story transparent structure signifying regeneration and growth while artilleries will be converted into lighting fixtures to underscore their futility in Kinmen’s transition to a peaceful island of economic opportunity
LIU Xiaodong

Battlefield Sketches: The New Eighteen Arhats

Shakyamuni Buddha instructed the eighteen Arhats to live in the human world eternally and guide all sentient beings towards the path of Enlightenment and out of samsara (a Buddhist term for the cycle of life) to be free of all sufferings. Using the ancient Buddhist story of the Eighteen Arhats, Liu Xiaodong expresses the chaos and distress during war, and his hopes for peace and compassion. By first living on a base in his native Mainland China to paint life-size portraits of nine soldiers, then painting nine portraits of nine Kinmen soldiers while in residence on their base and exhibiting the eighteen total in a former military classroom for BMoCA, the soldiers cease to be “war machines,” in the artist’s words.  In hopes that the young soldiers of this generation might become “true emissaries of peace,” Liu humanizes them with his life-size portraiture and, by exhibiting the paintings together, symbolically bridges the Strait.

SHEN Yuan

Speaker Tea

Shen Yuan’s Speaker Tea was inspired by a large megaphone on the Fujian China coast that was used for years by the Chinese government to broadcast liberation campaign propaganda across the Strait towards Kinmen and greater Taiwan.  Shen replicated the megaphone and added a giant tongue to signify the messages it formerly dispensed. For the duration of the exhibition, visitors will be served tea from this perch as they gaze back at the now silent mainland.

TAN Dun

Visual Music

In an empty bunker, Tan Dun’s Visual Music features an audio track of loud smashing noises of the artist hammering a piano and an adjacent tunnel leading to a large subterranean arsenal where three video monitors show Tan in the act of wrecking the piano. There are also five pianos partially buried in the dirt inside the arsenal, one of which is behind bars playing automatically and another is to be played by the audience. Tan says of Visual Music, “every abandoned piano has a story behind it. As I look at these solemn objects, deep in my heart, I hear a harmony. The rhythms seem to be continuing an old story, as if it is responding to their faded owners, telling the untold, and answering the unanswered….History, time, and disaster can destroy the surface of all entities. However, the heart of music and harmony is eternal.”

Su-mei TSE

Some Airing…

In Tse’s Some Airing… an oversized propeller hangs low in the center of a bunker rotating lethargically and filling the space with a sense of uneasiness. Tse’s installation both represents the gradual suffocation of the everyday and proposes a method of mediating this banality, albeit with limited resources.  While Some Airing… conceptually freshens the air it also speaks to Kinmen’s stagnancy and solemnity resulting from years of imposed military presence.  In the arsenal behind the propeller-bunker is a vertical projection of the Yellow Mountain in black and white with what appears to be a sun rising from behind the landscape but is later revealed to be a balloon. This backdrop provides comic relief and atmospheric perspective in an otherwise oppressive environment.

WANG Jian Wei

Soft Target

Occupying the interior of the host bunker for Shen Yuan’s Speaker Tea, Wang Jian Wei’s Soft Target lines the inside of bunker with a skin of sponge, transforming the hard and hostile shelter into a soft and comforting womb-like space.

WANG Wen-Chih

Dragon’s Pond, Tiger’s Nest

Dragon’s Pond, Tiger’s Nest is a large outdoor installation in which Wang Wen-Chih extends a bunker by building a bamboo and rattan tower from it’s roof as well as a network of tunnels snaking above ground around the bunker. Not only does the artist wish to integrate the former war zone with its natural environment, but Dragon will purify the site, providing a Zen-like shelter for meditation and clarity. Concerning his work Wang said, “The inspirations of my work lie in the opposing yet fusing relationships between individual, nature, and communities, and the longing for communion and primitivism derived from meditation. Often working with natural materials such as rattan, bamboo and wood, my work searches for harmony after catastrophe or massive destruction.”

Tung Wang WU

Surrender

Surrender, a “documentary” based on a scripted story, derives material from Wu’s interviews with Kinmen children and furthers a prevalent theme in Wu’s work, that of juxtaposition.  Through the staging of juxtapositions in his work, Wu hopes to “provoke an accidental stream of unexplored thoughts” and achieve alternative perspectives on the conventions of life, in this case, Kinmen local life.

YAO Chien

Listen! Who is Singing?

BMoCA is Yao Chien’s first exhibition.In Nan Shan battlefield under a sprawling ancient Bayan tree, Yao Chien brings a karaoke machine for the residents of Kinmen to sing popular love songs that, Yao believes, “weave us together,” and has the ability to “become rituals, enter memories, travel across mountains and seas.” The power of pop culture­–and pop music­–is its assured resonance with contemporary youth. Listen! Who is Singing?  speaks to the Kinmen youth.

YING Bo

Fei Ya! Fei Ya! (Flying in Chinese)

Fei Ya! Fei Ya!  consists of two videos: athletes dressed in a formal suit and leather shoes playing soccer and a gathering of celebrated contemporary Chinese artists playing drinking games. Ying points to the absurdity of our contemporary civilization with the impractical apparel in the context of soccer while, with the drinking games, the artist comically signifies transgression, referencing the ironic degeneration of the once stellar military facilities into art installation sites.

YIN Ling

Let Lovemaking Lead the World Towards Peace

During the opening ceremonies, Yin Ling will stage a make-love-not-war performance for Let Lovemaking Lead the World Towards Peace, the documentation from which will show for the duration of BMoCA.Let Lovemaking features Yin Ling in camouflage lingerie making love to skeletons that are handcuffed and tied up like prisoners of war. Yin uses the tenderness of lovemaking in an effort to symbolically negate and flout the cruelty of war.

ZENG Li

Fight Theatre

For Fight Theatre, Zeng Li designed a three-panel stage prop of traditional Chinese warriors fighting on a backdrop with a map of Mainland and Taiwan. The stage set will host a performance by 20 members of the Peking Opera during the opening festivities, consisting of a succession of fight scenes excerpted from famous operas to reflect the constancy of violence in the history of this land. A video recording of the performance will air on the empty stage for the duration of BMoCA.