Hatch, a Dream at the Far Edge

2020 / 12 / 12 Sat.

2021 / 02 / 21 Sun.

10:00 - 18:00

  • Curator

    Akac Orat

  • Venue

    MOCA Studio


If you can read the ocean…if you can see the island in your mind, you will never get lost.
—Wade Davis, The Wayfinders
Islands, for the indigenous people, always indicate hope. Islands also form a string of pearls of biological reproduction. The island of Taiwan that we have inhabited for generations and other innumerous islands on the Pacific Ocean forming the route of the Austronesian migration are strung by an invisible thread. Hatch, a Dream at the Far Edge brings together the oceanic dream embracing Changbin and Lanyu. Calling it a “dream” is because the clues from the past are already lost and the traces are faded. Nonetheless, the sun, moon and stars remain unchanged in their movement, and we still have to work, live and dream following the information of everyday life. Maritime migration is an ability that island ecology has developed throughout evolution. Both humans and animals have migrated due to changes of resource and environment. Tens of thousands of years ago, the Austronesians sailed on canoes and reached different islands relying on the wind and ocean currents, for instance, the inhabitants moving between Lanyu and the Philippines in the distant past. When an island in the midst of the ocean comes into view, the island seems to possess a sense of perfection in a theological sense for the voyagers, who would imagine the resource and environment possibly existing on the island. The expectation would fill them with hopes. Even though they might encounter thick fog or roaring waves, the island would indicate a steady direction. We look for possible futures in the variegated contemporary environment; however, we spend more time checking our dreams. Dreams connect us with the distant past while signaling the present condition. Within the ambiguous connections between islands, we nurse the land of dreams through creating art and living our lives. The pre-historic Changbin Culture and the history of the Amis people’s life have formed the bloodline that joins Lanyu and other islands. The Austronesian peoples, who have been active along the Pacific island chain, have driven the exchange of useful objects through maritime migration and trade. Languages and customs have evolved over the course of interaction. Such reality of the past, however, has come to a standstill in the modern times. So, we hope to explore the far edge of dreams. It is time that we should create a new territory. Three artists have been building their dreams on this island—to be more precise, they are on the course of sailing to the new territory. Lafin Sawmah’s canoe and sculpture are depictions of the island. He hopes to create a new context for himself by sailing on the sea. As the sea knows no history, everything in it only becomes an after image in the progress of time. In Heidi Yip’s painting, sunlight cascades from the sky. Instead of describing such portrayal as sanctifying the island, it might be more suitable to say that her painting visualizes the reality of dreams. Maraos presents the treasures from Lanyu by removing those glass display cases; and the painting of his grandmother conveys a sense of freedom disunited from the colonial memory of the past. These artists discuss the island as well as the ocean, and it is during these unintended moments that dreams have come into being. Akac Orat




Akac Orat
Lafin Sawmah
Heidi Yip

Akac Orat has curated several experimental exhibitions, among which are Tag Alley, Unconditioned Miscellaneum: Video Acrobatic Squat and Live Ammo. For seven years, he was a teacher in Taitung, where he incorporated curatorial approaches into teaching while leading children to learn traditional indigenous crafts. In recent years, he has extended his practice to various disciplines and entered fields, and has built a traditional Amis house, woven innumerous baskets and cultivated a small plot of land in a forest.

Lafin is of Amis descent and grew up in Changguang, Taitung. His work ranges from drift wood to large-scale landscape wood sculptures. In wood, he finds quietude and tranquility, allowing his artistic life to flow through mountains and seas. With his own hands, Lafin reshapes the forms of wood, infusing the culture and wisdom from his ancestral generations into the sculptures, which sometimes delivers his critiques, and at other times, emphasizes the aspect of living.

Heidi Yip was born in Hong Kong. She has traversed different cultures of various countries before eventually settling down in Changbin, Taitung. She paints nature as well as the connections of life. She finds co-depending relations among ocean, culture, land and plants; and painting is one of her ways to do so. She also makes clay sculptures, weaves and gathers inspirations scattered in nature.

In the ocean, Maraos speaks to the public about the severity of marine litter; on land, he fights for the preservation of Lanyu (also known as Orchid Island). He has never forgotten the smell of the sea, but he has also remembered how nuclear waste has harmed the land and his people. He tells stories to protect the Tao culture that nurtures him. Amidst the changes of civilization, he utilizes art to utter criticisms of the gradually deteriorating condition without ever concealing his gentle heart.


Malavang no Pongso
Captain Lanyu from the Lone Island
Me and My Grandmother’s Paintings



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