A Tree That Became a Man in Its Dream and Found Its Own Picture, 1998

Mixed media , Dimensions variable
Image courtesy of Tina Kim Gallery

Site of Desire, The 1998 Taipei Biennial 
Taipei Fine Arts Museum
June 13-September 6, 1998

The 1998 Taipei Biennial was held at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum from June 13 to September 6, 1998. NANJO Fumio has been invited to serve as commissioner of the Biennial, which introduces over 30 artists from different parts of Northeast Asia, including Taiwan, China, South Korea, and Japan.
The theme of the 1998 Biennial is "desire." Since the first Biennial in 1992, the exhibition's contents have matured substantially; this marks the first international exhibition with foreign curators and artists.
The sudden shift from rapid economic growth and prosperity to deep economic crises and political unrest has deeply shaken the Northeast Asian region as the 21st century looms. Focusing its vision on desire as a generating force behind the society and world in which we live, the 1998 Biennial examines from various angles the changing chaotic shape and dynamism of today's cities, seeking new potential sources of energy for the future. Through the theme of desire, it also considers various contemporary social issues such as fashion, consumerism, identity, gender, and the conflict between tradition and modernity, while at the same time aiming to raise them to the level of universal questions regarding the true nature of culture and human existence.
The Biennial will be made up of works from a broad range of genres, and will include painting, sculpture, and media related work as well as installation pieces designed specifically for the exhibition space. The ages, experiences, and backgrounds of the artists too are diverse. The manner of displaying the works in the Biennial has two special characteristics. Firstly, the exhibition space is not limited to the 1st and 2nd floors, but is expanded to include the foyer, courtyard, and outside walls and outside museum spaces. Together, the number of works on display outside the building alters the external look of the museum. Secondly, regarding the exhibition rooms inside the museum, separate space has been allocated to teach artist as far as possible by respecting each artist's creative world.
We believe that the Biennial will lead to a reaffirmation of the historical and cultural ties shared by the different parts of Northeast Asia, which have formed unique cultures under the strong influence of modern West and the heritage of Asian thoughts, as well as promote further mutual understanding and cooperation among these regions.


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