"Chimera" is a group exhibition of Taiwanese new and digital media art put together by Yu-Chuan Tseng, artist, curator and Associate Professor at Shih Hsin University based in Taipei; and Jan Van Woensel, curator at Ladislav Sutnar Faculty of Design and Art at University of West Bohemia based in Pilsen.
"Chimera" originates from the understanding that over the past decades humans evolved into a hybrid of body and machine. Man is codependent of technology. The smart device that we became one with is both the key that opens endless passageways into virtual space and the vessel that we use to ride the waves of cyber-reality. Irrevocably, our voluntarily mass-movement to the virtual space caused a situation of alienation. In a state of unconsciousness, modern man abandoned nature and replaced it with an open-sourced virtual mirage that serves as an ever-accessible substitute. But this agnostic parallel plain is only an unsatisfactory stimulus and it only feeds human's increased dependence on digital tools. It provokes a double removal that is recognized in how personal alienation takes place in an increasingly alienating digitalized world.
"Chimera"is a melancholic and poetically-charged exhibition in which the loneliness of nature in the hypertechnological demiurgic era takes a central position.
By Jan Van Woensel
Are we Chimeras?
Do we genuinely exist? Are we, who exist through electronic signals, really our true selves?
This is the question I keep asking myself. Through message transmission, links are established between the virtual and real worlds. We rely on the virtual life to complete the dream to surpass all geographical boundaries and physical limitations.
The way of digital life, we create our existence by simply click to follow the direction of networking service. We activate an avatar and step into the virtual realm at any given time. Through the sharing and feedback on texts, images, and videos, this virtual database becomes a vast "backup system" for the memories of countless individuals. The virtual self even replaces the real self, to become the principle entity existing within this virtual world and carry out an immortal life on screen.
In a digital environment, humankind undergoes a mental evolution. The digital interface becomes a petri dish of our collective body. We have already become chimeras that integrate organic and inorganic materials as it fuses with digital mind, feeling and spirit. We have evolved to become hybrid bodies that have the ability to breed via digital information. Further we try to make the biological species to become a hybrid life form to fulfill the imagination and demands of human.
"Chimeras" as a metaphor symbolizes the existence in the digital age. The living creatures have evolved to become a race of cyborgs – hybrids. The physical and spiritual immersion have merged with digital genomes in a digital environment.
By Yu-Chuan Tseng
Artists: Chenwei Chiang, Chi-Ping Chin, Kung-ta Tseng, Scottie Chih-Chieh Huang, Tien-Chun Chang, Yu-Chuan Tseng, Yun-Ju Chen
Curators: Jan Van Woensel & Yu-Chuan Tseng