IT TAKES FOUR SORTS– CROSS-STRAIT-FOUR-REGION ARTISTIC EXCHANGE PROJECT

Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taipei
Macau Old Court Building, Macau
Osage Gallery Kwun Tong, Hongkong
He Xianguing Art Museum, China

For“It Takes Four Sorts – Cross-Strait Four Region Artistic Exchange Project (2012)”, five curators of contemporary art from Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau have each selected three to four active young artists from a geographic region not the curators own to create separate exhibition units. Working from their own geographic and experiential specificities, the five curators made their selections and compromises with the concept of exchange as a starting point to created a four-unit exhibition representing the four regions that comprise the 2012 “Cross-Strait Four Region Artistic Exchange Project”. This marks the third year for the project which began in 2008 with “Departure”, followed by “Butterfly Effect” in 2009, and “1+1” in 2010. The artistic exchange project continues in 2012 will be held at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum for the first time. The ‘chimera’(四不像) in the Chinese title in 2012 refers to Père David's Deer. Known as milu in Chinese, the beast is also known by its nickname sibuxiang-- literally “unlike any of the four”— referring to the milu’s appearance of having the antlers of a deer but is not a deer, the face of a horse but not a horse, the tail of a donkey but not a donkey, and the hooves of a cow but not a cow. This is an apt metaphor for this exhibition of works from four regions across the China Strait, each with their own geopolitical differences as well as cultural and artistic contexts. The ‘chimera’ (四不像) becomes a concept for in-depth exchange, where five curators each observe the other in their geographical and contemporary artistic context. The understanding and friction that the exchange inevitably produces creates an opportunity for us to observe the ambiguities and differences that exist across the Strait and in the four regions.

photo at Macau Old Court Building