When making art in Taitung, artist Chia HUANG met the protagonist of her works featured in this exhibition – Po Chun HSU (also known as Ko-e) due to serendipitous circumstances. The artist entered Ko-e’s life, and collaborated with electronic musician Yi Chin HUANG and Yuanzi, enabling the writing of electronic music to take place in the field. Collaboratively, they have produced this exhibition – Cosmos Shrine, which features experimental sounds, documentary photography, and experimental videos.
By the sea in Fushan, Taitung, there is a temple without a congregation. In the temple live a mother and her son, who are both psychic. Whenever the deities descend, the mother would chant in the heavenly language to assist the souls of the deceased to elevate. The son, Ko-e, possesses the ability to channel messages from the above, which he would pass them to those around him. Ko-e is about sixty of age this year. He moved to Taoyuan when he was in junior high school, and sustained himself as a labor worker. He married a Filipino wife at forty, but their marriage only survived a short year. Ko-e’s father suffered from schizophrenia. Since Ko-e was a child, his psychic ability and unusual messages led to discriminatory jeering and exclusion by villagers. Three years ago, Ko-e’s mother fell ill. Despite his discontent, Ko-e moved back to look after his mother. It was the first time he moved back home after he left when he was in junior high school.
The work Sky Channeling revolves around Fushan Village in Beinan Township, Taitung County, and extends from the life of Ko-e to discover the treacherously mystical yet profusely poetic world that informs his common, meager everyday life. Through the work, Huang listens to the divine conversations between the psychic mother and son, which, infinite as they are, are largely overlooked by people. In the work Skin, the artist invites Ko-e to film from his own perspective, and co-creates with Yuanzi. Engaging with such marginality, the artist eagerly listens to the untamed voices that attempt to make their logic understood by the world, while searching for the image language which enables her to pay tribute to these unadulterated, primal voices.