Taipei National University of the Arts
Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts
Elga Wimmer and THE Gallery
Taipei Cultural Center of TECO in New York
Council for Cultural Affairs, Taiwan
First Federal Capital
Treatment of gardens has evolved into a genre featuring many aspects of nature: flowers, trees, water, and fauna — all of which are messages to the dreamer. Gardens are realms of longing, both spiritually and physically, and one expects them to be pleasant, visually colorful, or playful. These qualities and other more surprising ones are evinced in the work of these 24 Asian artists who challenge the mainstream culture discourse that relegates Asian contemporary art to a curiosity. Their collective oeuvre elucidates the diversity of experiences and culture that may be grouped together under the rubric of Asian contemporary art, Gardens change according to the season and as a result of human involvement. They are moving landscapes, and children's wonderlands, where fairy tales start. More frequently grounded in literary contexts, Asian gardens provide meeting places for poets, scholars, and literati; and mystical legend love stories flower in the back garden.
A framework for Dream in an Asian Contemporary Secret Garden consisting of the four areas of poetic garden, landscape in motion, wonderland, and hidden garden, located 24 artists to distribute within these areas. Within these broad categories, these 24 idiosyncratic visions generate a kaleidoscopic array of works that take part in manifold artistic dialogues. Juxtaposed with an Oriental floral motif is a Wall Street money matrix; pop images look down on kinetic installation art; finely decorated kimonos share wall space with fantasmatic paintings; dayglow pink polluted flamingos line up to lure sirens and forest messengers. Some of the gardens conjured up are neither enjoyable nor welcoming, and contain secrets that can only be unveiled by an artistic journey. Such gardens might be overlooked or ignored by untutored eyes. The wide variety of different interpretations of and responses to garden is the theme here.
In this garden theme, we are not trying to entertain the guest and obtain their pleasant attentions, but pointing to a broad metaphysical strain in the works. The ultimate issue in the work is to provide a trace and patina of the time. The various paintings and installations expose the endless cycle of consumption and reproduction of city garden. By ultimately looking over all the work, we see gardens transcending economic and political issues. Just as nature is always changing, the species that play a major role in the drama, like characters and actors are eventfully rotated. A truth of the universe - humans are in transit in the city and in the world. Stories left in the garden can also be distorted. In other words, in the secret garden celebrity doesn't carry and weigh.
The flowers blossom and fade, then re-blossom and the sprout is reborn again in another spatial resolution, and so imaginary entry into it again. The cycle revolves any changes like daily incantations, we offer an eloquent meditation on cities daily movement, with mutability and eternal rhythms.