[Hanart TZ Gallery|Taipei Dangdai] Yeh Shih-Chiang + Yeh Wei-Li: Artistic Convergence of Two Generations
17 January - 19 January 2020
Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 1 (4th Floor)

Hanart TZ Gallery|Taipei Dangdai

Yeh Shih-Chiang + Yeh Wei-Li: Artistic Convergence of Two Generations

Venue|Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 1 (4th Floor)
No. 1, Jingmao 2nd Road, Nangang District, Taipei City
VIP Preview (invitation only)|2pm-5pm, Thursday, 16 January
Vernissage (by invitation or advance ticket)|5pm-9pm, Thursday, 16 January
Public Opening|
11am-6pm, Friday, 17 January
11am-6pm, Saturday, 18 January
11am-5:30pm, Sunday, 19 January

Yeh Wei-Li’s “on-site archeology” turns artistic practice into research methodology. Through imaginative engagement he breathes new life into the “historical remains” of the life and art of Yeh Shih-Chiang (1926-2012). The reconstruction of Yeh Shih-Chiang’s former home in Shuinandong into a “residence museum” will be completed in the middle of this year. It is while living in this house, located in an old gold mining village at the foot of Mt Jiufeng and looking east towards the Pacific Ocean and Guishan Island, that Yeh Shih-Chiang developed his artistic conception that was to inform his creative work in the second half of his long life. This former residence of Yeh Shih-Chiang will now become a cultural and geomantic pulse point in the northeastern corner of Taiwan.

A major new publication on the project, Yeh Shih-Chiang + Yeh Wei-Li, will be launched at the Art Fair. The transmission of artistic illumination between generations is the creative methodology Yeh Wei-li uses in exploring the cycles of history and the operating mechanisms of social change.

Yeh Shih-Chiang was born in 1926 into a scholarly family in Shaoguan, Guangdong Province, China. During his student years at the Guangzhou College of Art, Yeh was granted permission by the influential artist Gao Jianfu, then Principal of the College, to take leave from his studies and set out on an adventure to travel and sketch along the way. With the intensification and spread of China’s Civil War, Yeh was forced to abort his plans and redirect his route to Taiwan. Unexpectedly, Yeh became stranded in Taiwan at the end of the war, when travel between Taiwan and the mainland was cut off. During his first few years in Taiwan, Yeh studied art at the Taiwan Provincial Teachers’ College (now National Taiwan Normal University) in Taipei. Depressed by his isolation from his homeland, Yeh grew increasingly reclusive and secluded himself in the countryside, where he lived a simple, ascetic life, practicing Zen Buddhism, teaching and painting. Gradually Yeh planted both creative and spiritual roots for himself in Taiwan, and every aspect of his daily activities was informed by a conscious awareness of the ideal of inner cultivation shared by both the Chinese literati and Zen traditions.

Contemporary artist Yeh Wei-Li was born in Taiwan in 1971. Since 2015, he has been engaged in a process of gradually and painstakingly excavating the history and environments of Yeh Shih-Chiang’s life as a means of understanding the personal and creative archaeology of the artist himself. His journey has taken him from Yeh Shih-Chiang’s abandoned residence in the remote village of Wan Tong in Xindian County to the master’s former home in the northeastern seacoast town of Shuinandong, on a path to unearth and re-examine the traces of Yeh Shih-Chiang’s world. Yeh Wei-Li’s series of photographic works taken over this period reveals a process akin to preparing and plowing the soil, planting the seeds and waiting patiently for them to grow, without expectation, until suddenly a new kind of illumination appears. In 2019 Yeh Wei-Li began to build wooden frames for Yeh Shih-Chiang’s oil paintings, as an act of homage to the master and a way of creating new possible perspectives through which to approach his works.

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