Contemporary art museums in major cities worldwide have been engaging the public in exploration of social issues, artistic viewpoints, and the human condition by visually representing these topics through contemporary artistic approaches. They offer the public a route to apply perceptual knowledge to the discussion of diverse social issues and inspire humanity's vision for a better understanding of the world. In 2017, prestigious European art museums, including the Tate Modern, the Tate Britain, and the British Museum, have launched various thematic exhibitions featuring LGBTQ artists, collections of LGBTQ individuals, and issues of LGBTQ history and rights. These exhibitions emphasized on the mainstream heterosexual society's self-examination on its prejudices, falsities, and oppression against LGBTQ people as well as its respect for LGBTQ community while honoring the artistic achievements of LGBTQ artists that have revealed their inner world and aesthetic value.
Among Asian countries, Taiwan has been comparatively friendly to LGBTQ community, and will soon become the first Asian country to legalize same-sex marriage. (Taiwan's Judicial Yuan has announced its Interpretation No. 748 on May 24, 2017, declaring the Civil Code's failure to protect the freedom and rights to same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, and demanding the executive and legislative departments to finalize the revision or legislation of related laws to protect the rights to same-sex marriage.) However, the society seems split in opposition whereas genuine attentiveness to this issue is still needed. Spectrosynthesis - Asian LGBTQ Issues and Art Now responds to this historical wave of our time and is the first survey exhibition featuring LGBTQ issues in Asia. Through artistic critique that prioritizes concept, the exhibition aims to serve as an intermediate for a dialogue about diverse issues in society, allowing people upholding different ideas and principles to create enthusiastic and positive relationships through different forms of interaction.
Employing “spectrum of light” as the theme, this exhibition addresses LGBTQ community’s rich history and its appeals for peace, love and diversity with rainbow as its symbol. On the one hand, the spectrum of colors can be seen in a rainbow, a phenomenon caused by the refraction of white light. Rainbow and light are two sides of the same coin, implying that this exhibition is not about the binary opposition between light and darkness, but as diverse and inclusive as the spectrum in terms of its artistic expression and exploration of LGBTQ issues. On the other hand, light is the everlasting source of energy for the creatures on Earth. It treats and nurtures all living organisms fairly and equally, and promises them growth, hope, and kindness. Based on their similar backgrounds in culture, language, geographical location and ethnicity, 22 artists from Taiwan, China, Hong Kong and Singapore are showcased in the exhibition with a total of 51 artworks. The exhibition represents the life stories and related issues of the post-war Chinese LGBTQ community as the artworks on view touch upon a profusion of subject matters such as identity, equality, exploitation by mass media, social predicaments, comments on individuals/groups, human desire, as well as life and death.
It is hoped that, by underlining ideological differences, the exhibition can bring out the diversity in human social values to generate more discussions, and comprehensively improve the condition of human rights in Taiwan and other Asian societies through the dialogue about diverse gender issues.