Born in Miaoli, Taiwan in 1977, CHIU Chao-Tsai graduated from the National Institute of the Arts （the Taipei National University of the Arts now）in 2000 and received his master’s degree from the Department of Fine Arts at Taipei National University of the Arts in 2004. Throughout his artistic career, he has been known for his unique installation of “interactive toy-like sculpture” and the interactive relationship between works and viewers.
Since 1999, he has continued experimenting on how mixed media can create interactive installations （toys）which encourage game-like thinking. People’s movement triggers these toys to make sound. These works include Marble Fall into the Dish（2001）, Soundless series（2002-2004）, Sitting and Watching （2002）, Yi（2003）, 1/2（2008）, and etc. In 2004, he started to develop the weakened images of the saints Seven Sages’ Gossip Room, lowering the heads of these confident figures. The concept was further explored in The World of Fatigue in 2008. Meanwhile, In Between in 2007 touches upon how viewers’ participation changes the image. Both series talk about the active participation and the change of meaning by shattering the boundary between the high and the low, the soft and the hard, or between you and me. The preexisting understanding and perspective are thus reversed.
Chiu transforms serious subjects into game-like installations（toys）. When one operates the work, he/she creates various potentialities to reverse, bury, or reveal the meaning of the work. Chiu’s toys not only challenge the untouchable rules of an artwork but also reflect how an artwork plays with the diverse relationship between creation and manipulation or between the self and the others.
The World of Fatigue is a series work which the artist has developed since 2009. Chiu particularly chooses the major architectures which are given great significance or objects and figures which symbolize great success or political power to make large-size wind-up toys. After viewers wind it up, the magnificently standing statue will be drooping slowly with the music of the wind-up toy. The Fatigue series used to feature two Cold War strongmen, Chiang Kai-Shek and Mao Zedong, as its main characters, depressing their heroic, arrogant, proud, and determined images in the political reality to create parody. The World of Fatigue – Weapon series in the exhibition features missile, machine gun, and many other weapons associated with power. In the work, the artist uses giant black shadow to trigger a sense of fear both visually and psychologically. However, Chiu integrates the idea of toy-playing, transforming the overwhelming sense of threat into a toy to be manipulated as he transcends the immense reality.
Adopting a game-like attitude to deal with social relations is an interesting aesthetic trend among the artists of the 1970's generation. In 2001, art critic and curator Chia Chi Jason Wang has mentioned his observation on the subjects of “revisiting childhood” in the works of young Taiwanese artists, describing how they “revisit the childhood experiences to go over from the self.” Through the childhood experiences, they “gaze into, deconstruct, question, or tear down” the social reality in the world of the grown-up.
“Game” is human’s first experience to play with objects and to deal with one’s relation with the community and the space. Chiu’s toys follow the same spirit. Viewers are invited to play with the toys so that they might get a sense of what the artist wants to express through the works.
|Chinese title：||疲軟世界 – M16 & AK47|
|English title：||The World of Fatigue - M16 & AK47|
|Medium / Classification：||Mixed Media|
|Dimensions：||125×61×339 cm（M16）, 110×61×305 cm（AK47）|
|Collection Unit：||Courtesy of the artist|
|Contact method for authorization：|
|Related Exhibition：||"The Pioneers" of Taiwanese Artists, 1971-1980|
|Related Work：||In between – Whom|