Prophet and North 先知與北方
Two channels video, Object, Flowers, Pottery / 雙頻道錄像、現成物、鮮花、陶器
Size Variable / 視場地尺寸而定
( Installation view of Site of Consciousness: Council Room, Tainan, 2018 )
The Tainan City Council (MinJhih Civic Center, formerly the Tainan County Council) used to be the Cultural Building. It has briefly been used as the first library in Tainan County. After a series of restorations, it officially became the Tainan County Council Building on May 13, 1980 and has remained so until 2010 when the Tainan County and the Tainan City were merged, its name being changed to the Tainan City Council (MinJhih Civic Center). Having been used as the space of the Tainan County Council for three decades, the MinJhih Civic Center has completely gone through the history of Tainan’s local autonomy after World War II. It also incarnates aspects of the regional development, local spirit, group consciousness and party politics within the range where the locality of Tainan County was implemented as part of the national development. After the integration of the Tainan County and the Tainan City, the preservation and reuse of the Minzhi Parliament (formerly County Council) building became a topic for locals. By means of art exhibitions and performances, the curatorial team of "Site of Consciousness: Council Room" invited artists returning or moving to Tainan to re-intervene and revitalize the old parliamentary space, and to incite citizens in Tainan’s North Riverside District to dialogue and exchange with public issues through artists’ on-site productions, exhibitions and performances.
The "Council Room" is also the "Site of Consciousness", a forum of public affair discussions where different roles and regional representatives echo one another. The mutual verbal arguments aroused the concrete impact on the living environment and the public interest. It is the real site for decision-making, a place where ideologies intersect, and an institution that reflects democracy and local autonomy. Through his/her perception of the parliament site, the artists approach via aspects of the parliament’s history, the architectural vocabulary, the spirit and relations of the forum, etc. Through sounds, visual elements, behaviors and manners of actions, the space and the site are employed as a reality theater, reflecting the possibilities of the building's past, present and future. The exhibition-performance project is based on the concept of "on-site". On-site production emphasizes the on-site production, which is a series of artistic projects jointly planned and carried out by the artists. It involves locality and emphasizes the relation of dialogue between the community and artists.
For the event, three local or foreign artists are invited: Ting Chaong-wen and Cia Hsinyuan Lee from Taiwan as well as Nigel Brown, from Australia. Through their own personal consciousness, the artists penetrate the forum site, shape the space and stir up the public's different imaginations toward the site, thus constructing a platform for dialogue between the space and the public. In the exhibition "Site of Consciousness: Council Room", Ting Chaong-wen’s work North is a re-incarnation and recreation of missing components on the roof of the former parliament building; it is a historic-styled roof that was demolished by the Parliament because of talks about Feng Shui. As for the work Prophet, it involves urban planning in Tainan’s Xuejiang District during the period of the Japanese colonization; it takes Chen Huan-zhong, the first elected president of the council, as the prototype of the story and mingles images and texts, revisiting legends about the council as well as the many fictions and coincidences behind.
Through actions, performances of sound and installations, Cia Hsinyuan Lee’s work, A Pool, a Group of Koi, Knocking connects sounds on the water’s surface and underwater, as well as visual and audio elements of water reflections, narrating the occurrences among water, local history, life and politics. The work thus represents the transformation and circulation of consciousness in different locations; Clean Action (Tracker), a collaborative work made on the top floor to remove dust accumulated in the space for a long time through the physical labor in the top floor space of the parliament. Both responded and reflected on the relationship between the local residents and the parliament. Nigel Brown invited those who usually played Chinese chess in the Nanying Green Park opposite the parliament building; they enter the lounge of Chamber of Deputies to play a game of "Chinese chess of Democracy". Results from the shooting of this game are then presented in the parlor room, providing an opportunity to transform the meaning of the parliamentary site, letting people think about the social construction that governs us.
"Site of Consciousness: Council Room" is a performance and an exhibition of contemporary art as well as a civic action for transforming art into a political field.
「議事現場」亦為「意識現場」，論公眾之事的議事空間，且迴盪著不同角色與區域代議者，一來一往的言詞論辯所激盪出對生活環境與大眾利益的具體影響，這是產生決策的真實場域，一個思想意識交會的地方，體現民主與地方自治的機關。藝術家藉由自身對議會場域的覺知，從議會歷史、建築設計語彙、議場精神與關係等面向切入，將空間場域作為現實劇場，透過聲音、視覺的元素、行為和行動的方式，觀照大樓過去留下的、現在呈現的與未來的可能性。本次展演的計畫以「on-site」為概念，on-site production 強調的是在地製作，也就是藝術家共同籌劃執行的一系列藝術計畫，涉及了在地性，並且強調社群和藝術家彼此之間的對話關係。
活動邀請了三位國內外藝術家，台灣的丁昶文、李欣芫與澳洲藝術家奈鳩‧布朗 Nigel Brown，透過藝術家個人意識，透視議場、形塑空間並且激盪出市民對議場不同的想像，建構起空間與市民對話的平台。在「意識現場－議事廳」的展覽中，丁昶文的作品《北方》復刻並重製了原議會大樓屋頂上的遺漏構件，一座因風水之說而被議會拆掉的寶頂；而作品《先知》是以日殖時期推行台南學甲的都市計劃，並於戰後當選第一屆議長的陳華宗為故事原型，將以影像與文字的交錯敘述，重新回訪關於議會的傳說，以及背後諸多的虛構與巧合。李欣芫的《一池水、一群鯉魚、敲》作品，透過行為、聲音的演出與裝置，串連水上、水下的聲音以及水面倒影的視聽元素，敘述水、地方歷史、生活、政治之間的發生，呈現意識在不同位置的轉換與流轉；於頂樓共同創作區的《清潔行動（循跡者）》透過連續於議會頂樓空間的身體勞動行為，除去久積於空間中的塵埃，她的兩件作品皆回應與呈現身為在地居民與議會關係的反思。奈鳩‧布朗 Nigel Brown，邀請平時於議會大樓對面綠都心公園下棋的居民，進入議事堂進行一場《民主象棋》的對弈，透過拍攝這場對弈，最後於議長室會客空間播放此對弈過程，以提供一個使議會場域意義轉換的機會，讓⼈去思索那些⽀配我們的社會建構。