In the end of this summer, Taitung Art Museum invites the conceptual and performance artist SHI Jin-Hua to present his latest solo exhibition The Rocks Return to Soil Where The Heart Belongs from 28 August 2021. The opening reception will take place in Shan Ge Hall at 2:30pm on the same day. The exhibit immersed in the legacy of the father of the artist's and saturated with the performance art and conceptual painting would definitely be the unique feast of aesthetics for Taitung audience.
The Rocks Return to Soil Where The Heart Belongs: SHI Jin-Hua comprises two themes. Artist SHI Jin-Hua demonstrates the tailor-made series 'Ink Walking' and 'Rocks' with the deployment of a black and a white gallery room as undergoing self dialects, exploration, experiment and realisation. The arrangement –'Ink Walking' showcased in the black 'Shan Ge Hall' and 'Rocks' in the white 'Hai Wu Hall' – points up that SHI's contemplation on this exhibit is different from the general ones that emphasise on the presentation of conclusion and result but active thinking of performance art instead. SHI's self-exploration and art practice therefore is being rendered.
When entering the gallery rooms, the viewers will first encounter the performance art piece, Ink Walking, inspired by Buddhist Sutra and then the other series originated from the love of the artist's father for selecting and collecting rocks. 'Rocks' series concludes the artist's reflective thinking, the progress and outcome of the explorational experiments. In Ink Walking, SHI repeats walking with a full bowl of ink on hand. Whenever the ink spills out during his movement, he refills it with water. The walk carries on until the liquid in the bowl becomes clean water. The performance will be documented and edited into video on display for audience who cannot see it live. They will still be able to imagine and chew the performance over through the fabric on ground, video and printed images on the wall. Besides, in the layout of 'Rocks', the ink traces, foot prints, rocks, photos, sketches, drawings, notes, calligraphy, the set of tables and chairs, painting tools and lightings are physically arranged in the space but in a rather symbolic presentation. They signify the studies of mind. When the artist confronts challenges and difficulties, he always finds subtle light of hope despite the struggle for turmoil and uncertainty. Like SHI said:
When I entitle the exhibit The Rocks Return to Soil Where The Heart Belongs, I've alluded to the final field to cultivate and belongings for our lives – a place in the heart called mind. It contains the remaining affections of my father's, mountain and river, soil, art, history, kindred spirit, and Buddhism. They are all there. As for them, they should let go once they comprehend. Let's make the place in mind resume what it's supposed to look like.
Press release courtesy Mind Set Art Center.