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‘Cinema Otherness of Cinema’ : A Film and Art Exhibition of Kao Chung-Li(高重黎). Dissect the Image. Gaze upon the History

Posted in about Art, about Video Art, Between Art & Cinema by sylvielin on July 28, 2013

The hand-held projector modified by Kao Chung-Li is constituted of an old cassette as its structure. The viewer sees 8mm film by operating the handle. Courtesy――Tina Keng Gallery, EX!T Experimental Media Art Festival in Taiwan. Copyright――Kao Chung-Li

‘[…]here, if we regard the visual culture of image as an arena for struggles, never follow the rhythm and the pace of other competitors : such passivity is the curse for which one is bound to be won over and colonized.’

――Kao Chung-Li, ‘The Reform of Visual Writing’〈1〉

〔Extract from the original text〕

Kao Chung-Li’s artistic career is unique in comparison to most Taiwanese artists. Crossing over filmmaking (experimental, animation and documentary films) and visual art practices such as painting, sculpture, photography and installation. In the eighties, on the one hand, he won several Golden Harvest Awards(金穗獎) in the field of filmmaking (in Taiwan) and, on the other hand, took part in the artists group ’Living Clay’(息壤) that already put out experimental projects in non-official and unconventional venues when the country was still under the martial laws. The group carried out a series of projects until the end of the nineties, following a consistent anti-establishment conceptual line ; other artists taking part included Lin Ju(林鉅) and Chen Chieh-Jen(陳界仁).〈2〉

The diverse artistic attempts of Kao Chung-Li actually center on experiments around the ‘motions of images’, with the 8mm film as his primary medium along with various audiovisual machineries that he reconstructs. Some of the pieces belong to the ‘Photochemical Mechanical Mobile Images’ series which he started in 1998. According to the artist, ‘[…]I continue to make the ‘‘Photochemical Mechanical Mobile Images’’ installation series. Being displayed, they also simultaneously reveal themselves on a minimal degree, which signifies an existence that runs towards the irretrievable and the destruction of the image. The shooting, the hand-drawn animation and projection principles are all visualized in the best possible way through the form of installations. It is an attempt at simultaneously activating several dimensions : those of philosophical, of poetry, of politics, of economy, of history, of aesthetics and of technology. Such is an apprehension that refuses to be inverted.’〈3〉


1. From the artist’s official website : My translation into English.

2. About the ‘Living Clay’ group, see an interview with Chen Chieh-Jen :
3. In ‘Inverted Image’, published on the artist’s official website (see note 1). My translation into English.



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