Born in Taipei, Taiwan in 1976, CHEN Ching-Yao 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 2006. In 2000, he won the first prize of New Perspective Art in Taiwan Dimensional Creation Series. In 2001, he won the Taipei Prize. In 2008, he was sponsored by Asian Culture Council to stay in New York as a resident artist at Location One. He held his solo exhibitions in Korea, New York, Taipei, and many other places in 2009. Since 2002, he has also been a member of Hantoo Art Group, a major artist group in Taiwan.
In 2001, Chen won the Taipei Prize with his work Bubble Task Force, which marked the beginning of his long-term exploration of subculture, the politics of image, and other related issues. Costume play, appropriation, misplacement, and collage are recurring themes in his artistic practice. Through his extremely superficial placement as shown in his continuous impersonation of others, how one looks at “the others” and how one identifies oneself become contradictory and complicated. It encourages viewers to come up with a more profound question to interpret the defenseless appearance.
In Dear Leader We Love You! series, the artist again shows his magical cosplay skill, dressed up as well-known political leaders such as Sun Yat Sen, Mao Zedong, Kim Jong-il and Chiang Kai-shek. To our surprise, these portraits seem so real. Although the leaders are from different cultures, they speak the same language of “political authority,” which makes them all look alike in the paintings. The size of the painting is similar to those portraits which used to be hung in every assembly hall, auditorium, classroom, conference room, and review stand. The artist not only imitates the stereotypical image of authority, but also the form of the genre to show the absurdity of the authoritative convention.
CHEN Ching-Yao’s works have always been closely related to the influence of foreign cultures in Taiwan. With the help of mass media, foreign cultures dominate audience’s cultural perspective. The visual mainstream in different period of time represents shift of global cultural powers which control every aspect of our lives. In 2004’s Blossoming in the Backyard series, the artist borrows the stories such as Kinshirou Touyama and Momotar. from Japanese’s period drama Genji Monogatari, gathering a group of friends to cosplay as these roles in the story while the artist plays the main role. In his parody of a classic text, he touches upon the society’s craze for Japanese culture. In 2008, Chen shows a crash course in culture in his Stocking Face Project, suggesting our culture cannot be accumulated if speed is the only thing we care about. T'ien-Kung K'Ai-Wu series is another parody of the ancient encyclopedia T'ien-Kung K'Ai-Wu, while the photographed costume play visualizes migrant workers’ situation in Taiwan. In 2009, Chen went to New York as an artist-in-residence. Again, he used costume play to challenge the cultural stereotype and symbols. His latest work Dae Jang Geum and Big Sausage offers a new interpretation of the recent “Korea fever” in Taiwan.
In 2009’s Homeless Project, CHEN uses cardboard boxes to make the tent-shaped architectural models of offices of president or political leader in different countries. It is like a political satire that the artist travels around the world with the tent after the financial crisis. International Radio Exercise in 2012 touches upon the common phenomenon of “radio exercise” in East Asia and how the nations try to impose their authorities on the bodies and the consciousness of citizens. In Dear Leader, We Love You! between 2013 and 2014, the artist returns to painting but he continues his cosplay-style parody to mock the solemn manner in the political portraits of national leaders.
|English title：||Dear Leader, We Love You !|
|Medium / Classification：||Oil paints and Acrylic colors|
|Dimensions：||45.5×38 cm×11 pieces|
|Collection Unit：||Collection of Mr. Tan, Ching Chung|
|Contact method for authorization：|
|Related Exhibition：||"The Pioneers" of Taiwanese Artists, 1971-1980|