Gold Coast City Art Gallery in partnership with
the Taipei Fine Arts Museum on Taiwan will open the exhibition Face to
Face: Contemporary Art From Taiwan, which will also tour to Canberra,
Sydney and Melbourne. This exhibition, curated by Ms. Sophie McIntyre
represents the first of a series of exhibitions co-organized by these
two sister-city galleries.
Face to Face showcases 30 mixed media works by 8 contemporary artists in
Taiwan from the thirties-something generation. As the beneficiaries of
Taiwan's Economic Miracle, this new generation of artists are facing
the real effects of Taiwan's rapid economic modernisation and its
impact on the environment and on local practices and beliefs. In this
post-industrial society where urbanisation, commercialisation and
westernisation co-exist, the self has become the focus of veneration, as
people in Taiwan struggle not only to save face but to show face.
The artists included in Face to Face explore a wide range of
contemporary issues which are relevant to Taiwan, but which also have
global significance. Artist Yao Jui -Chung for example, explores the
construction of national identity. In his most recent series titled
World is for All, Yao has visited various cities around the world and
photographed himself standing under the gate which symbolically marks
the entrance to Chinatown. The title World is for All is adopted from
the inscription on the gates and Yao uses it deliberately to examine the
patterns of immigration and settlement by Chinese all over the world.
Other artists, such as Chen Chieh-Jen, Wang Jun-Jieh and Huang Chih-Yung
focus on the mass media and the growing consumer market in Taiwan, to
explore the relationship between reality, illusion, desire and
detachment, life and death. For other artists the environment, family,
and gender issues are of central concern, and transcend geographic
These artists work in a variety of 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional
media, including photography and computer-generated works, painting,
drawing and textiles.
The majority of artists included in Face to Face will create a new work
designed specifically for this exhibition, and at least two artists will
come to the Gold Coast to produce their works. To further develop the
opportunity for cultural interaction and exchange which is central to
Face to Face, several artists will also participate in seminars, and
artist in residency programs and other public programs which have been
organized at Gold Coast City Art Gallery and at other participating
touring venues in Sydney, Orange, Canberra and Melbourne.
This exhibition is the culmination of several years of research which
the Curator, Sophie McIntyre, has undertaken whilst living in Taiwan.
As a recipient of the Edward Weary Dunlop Asia Fellowship and the
Australia Foundation's travel grant, Ms. McIntyre has been living in
Taiwan and working as Curator-in-Residence at the Taipei Fine Arts
Museum where she worked on this exhibition.
Entrance to this exhibition will be free, and Face to Face will be
officially opened on September 7 1999 at 6.30pm, by the Hon Matt Foley
MLA, Minister for Justice and Minister for the Arts. Special guest will
be Lin Mun-Lee, Director, Taipei Fine Arts Museum. A comprehensive
colour catalogue and an education kit will accompany the exhibition and
will be available through Gold Coast City Art Gallery and other
participating galleries. The exhibition will tour to the Orange Regional
Art Gallery, Orange; Drill Hall Gallery, Canberra; the Sydney College of
Arts, Sydney; and Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Melbourne
before it returns to Taiwan throughout 1999 and 2000.