【The Untitled Year】Xindian Boys Part 4
Duration: Apr 17,2021 - May 22,2021
Opening Party: Apr 17,2021 (Sat.) 19:00 - 22:00
Venue: VT Artsalon (B1, No.17, Ln.56, Sec. 3, Xinsheng N. Rd, Taipei City 104, Taiwan)
Xindian Boys is a teamwork-oriented art group comprised of four artists par excellence, namely TSONG Pu, WU Tung-Lung, CHEN Shun-Chu(1963~2014), and SU Hui-Yu. They transcend disciplinary confines and adopt different kinds of creative media such as painting, photography, installation and video. Their collaborative artworks tend to be infused with their living experiences and the humanistic background of the mountainous area of Xindian, therefore bearing more than a passing resemblance to an alternative topography survey. Since 2012, Xindian Boys has been featured in renowned institutes and exhibitions, such as Paris Photo, Taiwan Biennale, Taipei Fine Art Museum, 2017 HOBIENNALE(Australia), Double Square Gallery and TICK TACK in Antwerp.
In March 2020, the globe entered a daily and survival state of the Covid-19 pandemic. Although Taiwan's situation is not as dreadful as in other countries, a metaphysical "self-isolation" is once branded in people's hearts in various shapes, such as border blockade, footprint monitoring, a sudden drop in social frequency, masking of the face and freshly alienation. No matter from a physical or psychological state, it makes the three artists, who used to habitually stay in their homes in the Xindian mountainous area, feel of sheltering in the mountains and forests even more. Hence, the fourth project began with an indescribable contradiction as their prospective driving force, including living in seclusion and communicating with human civilization.
In the pandemic, people increasingly rely on the media to interconnect with the world. Since the widespread of the Capitol invasion broadcast in the US, a far-right activist dressed in a Native American-like fur headdress with horns became the news headline for a while. This distant and appalling image resets this piece of artwork of Xindian Boys. Thus, these elements of the (pseudo) naturalism, the abuse of totems, the smoke (whether it is mists, fire, fireworks, or tear gas), the viruses and DNA (a crude imitation of primitivism), the classic graveyards, the men and women on an outing and the frequently-failed-to-take-off kite, are placed in the scene of Nanshi Creek, a familiar environment for the artists, and stretched into a fictitious ceremony. All the messages are clear, transparent and indescribable, while the statuses seem to be closely related to the world yet have nothing relevant at the same time. Like Xindian Boys' first artwork, The Best Day, the lens of "The Untitled Year" consistently rotates between mountains and rivers; meanwhile, plenty trifle biting back incidents happen in succession. However, the difference is that something gloomy covers everything.
The Untitled Year is a year that artists cannot name, an untitled spirit calling ceremony, an untitled face, an untitled time, and an untitled situation.