Until Now—TING-TONG CHANG solo exhibition25. Jul - 8. Aug 14 / ended Matthew Gallery
Until Now—Creative Initiative Award Winner TING-TONG CHANG’s solo exhibition
Born in Taiwan in 1982, Chang graduated from Goldsmiths College in 2011. He currently lives and works in London and has exhibited internationally, and received a number of awards, including the Taipei Biennial (2008), Taiwan Biennial 2010 (Taipei), Moscow Biennial for Young Arts (2012) and Bristol Biennial (2014).
The exhibition is the outcome of Chang’s residency at the Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop as part of this year’s Creative Initiative Award, having been selected by a panel of Scottish visual arts professionals from a huge number of international applicants. The Creative Initiative Award has been created to provide funding and assistance to artists wishing to develop and realise innovative artistic projects. The nature of these projects could be anything but proposals should be ambitious, innovative and have a specific set of outcomes.
The exhibition, Until Now, takes inspiration from Hugo Chavez’s failed coup d’état (a.k.a Operation Zamora). Angered by the acceptance of the Washington Consensus and implementation of neoliberal reforms by President Carlos Andres Perez of Venezuela, Lieutenant-Colonel Hugo Chavez launched an attempted coup with the mission of overwhelming key military and communications installations on the of February, 1992. However, due to numerous betrayals and errors, Chavez’s forces were unable to seize power and gain control of important military targets.
Subsequently, Chavez and a small group of rebels were surrounded in the Military Museum and were forced to surrender in front of the national TV channels. Many viewers noted that Chavez remarked he had failed only until now (por ahora) and invoked the name of national hero Simón Bolívar. This speech immediately brought him into the national spotlight, as many Venezuelans, particularly those from the poorer sections of society, came to see him as a figure who stood up against government corruption and kleptocracy.
In response to the event, the artist has made 5 pieces of kinetic sculpture. By delicately utilizing explosives, light and smoke as sculptural elements, these works evoke religious notions of magic, miracle and resurrection. A coup is not just a sudden and violent deposition of a government, but through new technology, it also becomes a form of expression—a play of rhetoric, religious rituals and the situation at hand. In the 21st century, the acting revolutionary subject is digitalized and mediated by technology, which leaves the coup an open ending, with a catch: Por Ahora (Until Now).
Host: Taipei Contemporary Art Center (TCAC)
Co-organizer: Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop (ESW), School of History of Art University of Edinburgh
Sponsor: Taiwan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Taiwan Ministry of Culture
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