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Affect Machine: Self-healing in the Post-Capitalist Era

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Post date:2021-10-25



Affect Machine: Self-healing in the Post-Capitalist Era
Event Time
Event Location
No.181, Sec. 3, Zhongshan N. Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei City Taiwan, R.O.C
“Affect” and “machine” appear to be antithetical; yet, it is through this opposition that self-healing can be achieved. While the era of post-capitalism has seen overproduction in all fields, the explosion of information has left us with a fragmented sense of time. What’s more, subjectivity has been suspended, and our connection with the outer world has dwindled. Anxiety prevails even before a real crisis arises. This exhibition primarily addresses this crisis of subjectivity, but it also explores how the boundary between human and machine has become increasingly blurred. This phenomenon cannot be solely ascribed to industrialization nor to the disciplined nature of society but rather to the fact that the body and the digital environment have evolved to a state of interdependency. Affect and machines co-exist in the practices of the artists in this exhibition. The performative installations and drawing machines of Rebecca Horn imitate the sensorial and affective activities of human beings. Cam Xanh’s concrete poetry explores the visual similarities between biological and informational coding. Chen Chen Yu’s meditation machine vacillates between subject and spectacle. Chen Hui-Chiao, Olafur Eliasson, John Akomfrah, Chu Hao Pei and Lee Chang Ming have created installations that strike a balance between immersive affective environment and rational narratives. The analogy and dialogue between body and machine perhaps already presage the interaction between art and society in the post-pandemic world. Through immersive artworks, we explore the development of affect from the perspective of media art history, including body art, multi-media installation, anthropological approaches to the environment, theatrical works, and religious and folk culture. Among the eight sets of performance and digital artworks, seven are appearing for the first time in Taipei, and two are new commissions. The exhibition aims to instigate sensorial experiences with aspects of self-healing. Here, self-healing does not refer to restoration of the original state but rather to how we purify and train our senses. It will direct the audience to imagine the exhibition as an ensemble of healing machines. In the process of negotiating with various mediums, viewers can practice self-pacifying and the releasing of tension.


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