Taipei Dangdai Art & Ideas: Appreciating Art, From Asia to the World
Following a cancellation in 2021 and having faced a scale-down in 2022, the fourth edition of Taipei Dangdai Art & Ideas is back with renewed vigour this year, bringing together 90 leading international galleries from Taiwan, Asia and around the world. As part of an affiliation called The Art Assembly, Taipei Dangdai is a joint initiative between three of the world’s top art fair organisers, spearheaded by Sandy Angus, Tim Etchells and Magnus Renfrew.
This year, art lovers are in for a treat at Taipei Dangdai, with three main exhibition areas to feast their senses on: ‘Galleries’ offers a first look at art presented by the world’s most reputable galleries, ‘Edge’ showcases solo exhibitions of emerging artists, while ‘Engage’ addresses the significance of history through thoughtfully curated shows.
At its core, Taipei Dangdai aims to play its role as a central meeting point in East Asia for internationally-engaged art collectors and aficionados, which ties in with its public programmes like ‘Ideas Forum’, where 15 curators from both Taiwan and abroad share their experience of working in the art industry.
There is also ‘Taipei Platform’, a non-profit programme that offers an expansive view of the local cultural ecosystem. Through screenings, workshops and a pop-up library, visitors can set their imagination free as they connect on a deeper level with cultural practitioners and art publishers. alike.
Also not to be missed is ‘Node’, which goes beyond the limitations of a conventional “white cube” exhibition with four large-scale, immersive installations. Nick Dong’s “Becoming Horizon” incorporates over 100,000 handsewn mirror tiles, painstakingly crafted together with motion, music and light to bring concepts of nature to life, even when indoors. And what about “How to fancy the light of a candle after is it blown out” by German conceptual artist Olaf Nicolai, whose art explores the relationship between language, sound and the built environment, often inviting viewers to contemplate the ways in which human societies and the natural world intersect and influence each other.
SHINING A SPOTLIGHT ON ASIA’S ART SCENE
“Sense” by Tsai-Chien Lee. Credit: Liang Gallery
With over 30% of participating galleries exhibiting for the first time, it’s no wonder Taipei Dangdai 2023 is worth looking forward to: Hong Kong’s renowned Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery, which specialises in linking Eastern and Western art, brings forth a joint exhibition of celebrated artists like Li Huayi, Lalan, Xue Song, Ziad Dalloul, Oswaldo Vigas and Bai Ming.
“Pickpocket” by Shigeyuki Cho. Credit: Rin Art Association
“Reading 008” by Li Shan. Credit: ShanghART
Meanwhile, contemporary art gallery ShanghART, which has a presence in Shanghai, Beijing and Singapore, presents a carefully curated selection of works by East Asian artists, such as Indonesian durational performance artist Melati Suryodarmo, Singaporean visual artist Robert Zhao Renhui and Chinese bioart painter Li Shan. Korean gallery Gana Art, on the other hand, boasts a repertoire of Korean and Japanese artists, among them being Chiharu Shiota, Super Future Kid, Kim Kulim, Shim Moon-Seup and Eddie Kang.
“Becoming Horizon” by Nick Dong. Credit: Chini Gallery
We’ve also got our eye on Taipei Dangdai’s ‘Edge’ sector, where emerging artists will showcase their solo exhibitions: Taiwan’s Solid Art presents Himali Singh Soin, who specialises in immersive poetry and performance through metaphors from outer space and nature. Likewise, Hong Kong-based Blindspot Gallery taps into the desires of younger audiences with Uncheng’s emotional artwork. Art laboratory Capsule Shanghai will be exhibiting Alessandro Teoldi’s unique textile art made from in-flight airline blankets.
“To Edgard Varèse” by Lalan. Credit: Kwai Fung Hin Art Gallery
CONNECTING LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL ART COMMUNITIES
Taipei Dangdai’s diverse public programmes are well thought out, allowing different groups of art lovers – from experienced collectors to families and college students – to find an appropriate entry point. International curators and scholars such as Martin Germann (Mori Art Museum), Sun A Moon (Space AfroAsia), Xue Tan (Taikwun Contemporary) and Wong Binghao (Museum of Modern Art New York) will be sharing their perspectives through ‘Ideas Forum’, touching on issues of region and cultural belonging.
Don’t miss the guided tours, conducted by individuals richly experienced in the field of art, as they cooperate with cross-disciplinary partners. Join independent curator Janet Fang in an eye-opening experience to see how art exists in every aspect of our lives, or go behind the scenes with Hsieh Yi Tse from Pon Ding to find out what a day job in an art-centric bookstore feels like. If you feel adventurous, you might like exploring personal mythology with Vincent Tsai of Paper Matter, an artists’ book archive.
And finally, when it’s time to rest your tired feet, movie screenings by art space Our Place offer a welcome respite, with three short films by Taiwanese artists that take you from London’s old Chinatown to a Chinese restaurant in America. For additional enrichment, there’s also a pop-up library organised by Pon Ding Bookstore, featuring independent publications and paper-based works by PAPER MATTER, Shiau-Peng Chen, Ting Ting Cheng, dmp editions, nos:books, AUSPIC PAPER and TheCube Project Space.
“Fishing for the Blue Moon” by Martha Edelheit, 1959. Credit: Eric Firestone Gallery
“Milk 0103” by Mu Pan. Credit: Hashimoto Contemporary
“Dune #40” by Kohei Nawa. Credit: SCAI THE BATHHOUSE
“Alogon de Comondu” by Eduardo Sarabia. Credit: VETA by Fer Frances
According to Robin Peckham, co-director of Taipei Dangdai, ‘Flawness’ by Fenko Catalysis Chamber is his top must-see exhibit of the year. Fenko Catalysis Chamber is a studio that specialises in paper art, creating large-scale installations and sculptures to promote the development of paper culture in manufacturing industries, design and contemporary art. “Taipei Dangdai is honoured to collaborate with our partners and work together to promote the thriving art community in Taiwan to local and international audiences. As such, ‘Flawness’ is a particularly exciting installation that pays tribute to Taiwan’s traditional culture while showcasing Taipei Dangdai’s core mission of paying attention to the cultural pulse of our people.”
“Homme” by Ataru Sato. Credit: Kosaku Kanechika
“Little Prince” by Jian Yi-hong. Credit: Michael Ku Gallery
“See art, love art, buy art.” Taipei Dangdai Art & Ideas 2023 will be held from 12 – 14 May 2023, at Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center (Hall 1). More info on tickets here: Accupass.
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Writer | Michelle Tan
Having spent the past decade turning her passion into profession, Michelle is a freelance writer/translator based in Malaysia. Her lifelong dream is to become an urban hermit.