inToAsia: Time-based Art Festival 2013 – “MicroCities” Exhibition 2

When 8 Aug 2013 - 28 Aug 2013
Where The NARS Foundation
38-65 12th St
Long Island City, NY 11101
United States

Hsu Che Yu, Sighing Flowers and Shamisen, 2012. Courtesy of the artist

August 8 – 28, 2013
Opening reception: Saturday, August 10, 6-8pm

InCube Arts is delighted to present the first edition of inToAsia: Time-based Art Festival 2013 – MicroCities, with focus on Asia-based new media artists. Curated by CHEN Wei-ching, Joanne and LAI Lih-huei (Josiane).

In recent years, social and economic developments in East Asia have produced drastic changes in its urban landscape and introduced architectural diversity in its many cities. While developments in metropolis are inevitable, economic booms also affect small cities evolving into dense, fast-paced, technology-oriented societies. Changes in culture, ideology, social/economic structures, as well as ecological environment accompany this process of reconstruction. Dramatic changes in city landscape are prominent and obvious, but the collapse of the social system and its metamorphosis are not immediately apparent, and necessitates an in depth examination of the global trends affecting life in the City.

“MicroCities” endeavors to investigate the current conditions in Asian countries by retroactively drawing back on their original states prior to colonization, through the experience of assimilation during colonization, to the individual predicament in the current and post-colonization period. It is this series of “introspection” that each city/location/region undergoes in order to come to terms with its own history and understand its internal system. Many Asian countries carry with them a painful history of colonization, which resulted in a marginalized culture struggling between foreign colonial rule and the sovereign power. After the Axis powers were defeated at the end of World War II, these once-colonized countries recovered their independence, and through a series of de-colonization, forcefully regained their self-identity and reconstructed their cultures that were once oppressed. Asian countries who have regained their independence in the late 20th Century have been heavily influenced by Western cultures. Not only have they been pursuing their developments according to the rules set by those Western cultures, but they also considered their identities from a Western point of view, resulting in a hybridized view of their own identity and culture. As a result, immigration flow and colonization have not only allowed the reconstruction of the once-erased and forgotten origin, but also introduced an innovative phase of cultural hybridization.

“MicroCities” also attempts to explore the current social phenomena associated with the struggle to assimilate, accept, and progress into the new century. What will the future bring by relinquishing tradition and embracing the new economic and social norms? Have we overtaxed our social and ecological environments in this cycle of destruction and reconstruction? What insight have we gained through this experience? Industrialization has not only generated speedy developments in the cities, it has also produced drastic changes in the entire social and economic system. What kind of impact has the high-tech, comfortable, and convenient life style, accompanying urban development, brought to the ecological environment and the people dwelling in it? While the technologically-oriented society in today’s “flat world” easily connects the world with a variety of networks, it also gives rise to a fast-paced, information-overload and isolated modern living style. Would the metamorphosing in the organic relationship between the individual and the societies, resulting from the developments of technology, eliminate the actual local living experience? These aforementioned interrogations will allow us to analyze a series of phenomena that today’s society encounters in the post-modern era. “MicroCities” gathers together a group of time-based art, including videos, shorts, animations, kinetic installations, and real-time sound art performances. Coming from Taiwan, Japan, Korea, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Philippines, and India, these artists, with varying cultural and social backgrounds, reflect on their life experiences in relation to the world-wide social issues associated with a global culture, and how this affects the dynamics of the rising East Asian cities as a whole.

For more information, please click here.