New media artists from Taiwan aim to challenge perception of reality at a joint exhibition aptly named "Reality Factory" running in France from Sept. 18 through 23 as part of a week-long Parisian program celebrating foreign cultures.
Held annually by FICEP (Forum des Instituts Culturels Étrangers à Paris), Semaine des cultures étrangères will be organized around the theme "Digital and Virtual Realities" this year. Curator Lin Jin-yao (林經堯) then called on five Taiwan artists to showcase their creativity through clever applications of technology and new media.
Tao Ya-lun (陶亞倫) will unveil "EP7, 1," a virtual reality piece tailor-made for the exhibition venue EP7. To enjoy the sensational experience of moving towards an ever-expanding space, viewers simply need to slip on a pair of VR glasses and step upon a moving walkway. The project's prototype, "Prado 1, 2, 3," was named best installation at Spain's new media festival MADATAC.
Huang Hsin-chien (黃心健) will present "La Camera Insabbiata," where virtual reality meets personal experiences. Spectators will fly then fluctuate, and slide then slip through a deconstructed universe, thanks to a collaboration between Huang and the magnificent Laurie Anderson. Their teamwork was named best VR experience by the 2017 Venice Film Festival.
Huang Yu-jie (黃郁傑) will turn the plug on "Aqua AR," with which future homeowners can build their own creatures. Aquarium creatures are drawn through a tablet, and given corresponding life and characteristics by the artificial intelligence governing the program. The curator noted that technology should be applied more often towards supporting human emotions.
Chiang Chia-chi (蔣佳錡) will share "Corps raccord," a project that can only be activated by skin contact from two individuals. Inspired by traditional concepts of an inner flowing qi, this system attempts first to measure the energy and intimacy of this encounter, and then harness the current to power the display. Chiang collaborated with French artist Raphael Isdant on this project.
Chang Hsia-fei (張夏翡) will display "Soft You," named after a software that can mimic the artist's thought patterns and replicate her logic. The AI is then fed big data on facial recognition and constructs collages that are displayed on 12 different-sized screens reminiscent of national surveillance programs.
An opening reception for "Reality Factory" will be held on Sept. 18 at EP7, with performances by French collective CHDH ("Morphist") and featured artist Huang Hsin-chien ("Samsara") slated for 7.30pm through 11pm.