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Black and White - Giant Panda, 2018, five-channel video installation, 52 min 48 sec. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Black and White - Giant Panda, 2018, five-channel video installation, 52 min 48 sec. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Black and White - Giant Panda, 2018, five-channel video installation, 52 min 48 sec. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Stones and Elephants, 2019, two-channel video installation, 13 min. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Stones and Elephants, 2019, two-channel video installation, 13 min. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Stones and Elephants, 2019, two-channel video installation, 13 min. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.



Stones and Elephants, 2019, two-channel video installation, 13 min. Courtesy of the artist. Photo by Hsu Chia-Wei Studio.




HSU Chia-Wei

The Second Genre: The Sub-history of Wildlife Trade



In Black and White – Giant Panda, a panda is used as the entry point and acts as a connection between politics, history, animals, people and non-humans to tell the history of panda diplomacy.

Pandas were smuggled or traded several times from China at the beginning of the 20th century. Panda fever started when they appeared in the United States and Europe. They played an important diplomatic role in World War II, the Cold War, and still does to this day. Pandas also linked the complicated relationship between the United States, Europe, Russia, Japan, Taiwan, and China.

As a result of cooperation with the Manzaishis, panda’s lovely image is used as a material for comedy performance; meanwhile, the historical and political issues of panda diplomacy are described amusingly. In Black and White – Giant Panda, performance, historical materials, and the screen window viewing experience reflect and complement each other.

Stones and Elephants is derived from the Malay classic The Hikayat Abdullah. The author Abdullah chronicled his life in Malaysia. This art piece excerpted two chapters from this literary classic to serve as narration. One depicts how the British destroyed the strong fortress to weaken Malacca. The other chapter describes William Farquhar hired a Malay shaman to order a round-up of elephants.

In this piece, the artist invited a Malay shaman to read these two stories in Malay as a voice-over and to pray for a peaceful filming trip. The unique perspective offered by the drone allowed, creating a unique human and non-human communication between the Malay shaman, the drone and elephant.

This work must be connected to the Internet to search for keywords related to this work in real-time. This networking technology corresponds strongly with the network between the transmission tower and the drone in the film; with technology and the internet as a vessel for memories, attempting to reorganise untraced historical scenes that have been lost to time.

Profile

Graduated from Le Fresnoy - Studio national des arts contemporains, France, Hsu Chia-Wei stresses specifically on the actionability underneath image creation when comes to the practice of art, while linking up the relationships of humans, materials, and places omitted in the narrative of the conventional history through establishing the incidents beyond camera. Hsu has had solo exhibitions at MoNTUE, Taipei, Taiwan (2019), Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2018). He has participated in exhibitions at Eye Filmmuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands (2019), Biennial at Shanghai, Gwangju, Busan and Sydney (2018). He also co-curate the 2019 Asian Art Biennial at National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (2019) with Ho Tzu-Nyen.