The Proto-ocean for Co-consciousness

2022 / 11 / 05 Sat.

2023 / 01 / 29 Sun.

10:00 - 18:00

  • Curator

    Yi-Cheng Sun

  • Artist

    lololol (Xia Lin & Sheryl Cheung)
    CURIOSKI (Yi-Ho Li & Yi-Ting Cheng)
    Špela Petrič
    FabLab Dynamic
    Ding-Yun Huang
    Guy Ben-Ary


Scientists generally believe that the earliest consciousness in the biosphere emerged from the proto-ocean of the Earth. This body of water condensed from the water vapor in the atmosphere not only changed the atmospheric composition and Earth’s environment before the formation of life took place, but also protected and gave birth to the earliest consciousness. One can therefore say that it was because of the proto-ocean that everything came into existence.

“Consciousness” in Mandarin means “the summation of different psychological processes, including one’s perceptions of and thoughts about the world.” In English, “consciousness” is the combination “con-” (meaning together, jointly), “sci-” (meaning know), and “-ous” (meaning a lot). This exhibition builds upon and aims to expand these meanings. The title – The Proto-ocean for Co-consciousness, can be understood as the formation, coexistence, or inter-permeation of two or more consciousness, which results in the perceptive ability different from that of an individual. Such ability or experience might have been overlooked in a long time and have disappeared; so, it can also be seen as an innate ability waiting to be awakened. Consequently, the various artistic routes featured in this exhibition all serve as an invitation to spectators for experiencing or re-activating this way of perception or understanding. In other words, art serves as a method to “bring about the co-consciousness” in this exhibition.

Similar to astrology, natural science, big data, and algorithm – whether one living in the contemporary era believes in them or not – the appearance of these knowledge systems or technics provides (or provided) people with a set of epistemological skills to connect oneself with the entire cosmos, nature, or human society. The routes adopted by contemporary artists, in the same way, constitute a vast “new proto-ocean” that creates, nurtures, and protects the emerging consciousness. Unlike what scientists believe to be the origin of the earliest consciousness, however, the consciousness emerged from this new proto-ocean in this exhibition relies more deeply on the technics of interaction and the exchange of information among separate consciousness, which constitutes the foundation of the “co-consciousness.”

Therefore, in order to explore and expand the state of co-consciousness and perceptive experiences in the largest scale, the artworks featured in this exhibition involve an extensive range of topics, including “consciousness and corporeality,” “the living and the dead,” “human beings and divine existences,” “non-human species and information,” and “human society and technical artifacts.” In addition, the artworks also reflect on several related questions: “What are the ‘technics’ that bring about the co-consciousness?” “How do such ‘technics’ evolve with the development of technology?” and “What is the political implication of these technics?” Through such reflection, the artworks display the reflexivity and criticality inherent to contemporary art. I believe that, in this proto-ocean formed by the joint presence of artistic creation and spectators, what will emerge is not simply a new state of consciousness and perceptive ability, but instead an allegorical space formed in this process, which mirrors and reflects the relations, technics, and politics in contemporary society.



Curator & Artists

Yi-Cheng Sun
lololol (Xia Lin & Sheryl Cheung)
CURIOSKI (Yi-Ho Li & Yi-Ting Cheng)
Špela Petrič
FabLab Dynamic
Ding-Yun Huang
Guy Ben-Ary

Born 1990 in Taipei, Taiwan, Yi-Cheng Sun is an independent curator and a community contributor. Her recent focus includes experimental curating, methods of interdisciplinary co-creation, and teaching-artist. Sun graduated from the Department of Life Science, National Taiwan University, followed by the Graduate Institute of Trans-disciplinary Art at the National Taipei University of Arts, with a concentration in cultural production and curating. She is currently pursuing another degree at the Institute of Science, Technology and Society, National Yang Ming Chiao Tung University. Once aspired to become a scientist exploring what life is, Sun transitioned into contemporary art curating to break away from the limitations that disciplines tends to have over ways of thinking and learning. Art has since become her methodology for exploring the production of alternative knowledge. In 2016, she initiated “Selves-Educating on Curating”, a self-learning community for curating, and through organizing monthly member gatherings focusing on self-directed learning of curating, ways to teach and also to learn have also become methods used by Sun in her practice of alternative knowledge production.

lololol is a cycle of laughter, with endless variables composed with 0’s and 1’s; at the same time, it is also the fundamental pulse of the computer language. Sometimes joyfully elated, quietly smirking, or emotionally stoic, lololol is also at times a loud enlightened laugh, and sailing on the horizons of virtuality and reality, it is unbounded by conventional cultural logic or role-playing. An art collective co-initiated by artists Xia Lin (Taiwan) and Sheryl Cheung (Canada) in 2013, lololol focuses on body politics in the technology era and references Taoist philosophy to reflect on theories of technology and to reconsider our current world order.

CURIOSKI is a new media art collective formed by artists Yi-Ho Li and Yi-Ting Cheng. Using virtual reality (VR) as a medium for exploring their inner worlds, they experiment with the interactions between visual images and physical perceptions. CURIOSKI sees VR beyond just visual stimulation but as something that allows their observations of the world to be incorporated into unique virtual installations. VR has become a tool for catching glimpses of the world, and humans are bound to ultimately transform into spectators who are in possession of new senses.

Yi-Ho Li and Yi-Ting Cheng graduated from the Department of Communications Design at Shih Chien University, and they also both studied abroad at the University of the Arts Poznan in Poland. Respectively in 2021 and 2022, their solo exhibitions were presented at the Digital Art Center, Taiwan.

Špela Petrič is a Slovenian new media artist with a background in the natural sciences. Her artistic practice combines bio-media practices and performativity to enact strange relations between bodies that reveal the underpinnings of our (bio) technological societies and propose alternatives. Petrič has received several awards, such as the White Aphroid for outstanding artistic achievement (Slovenia), the Bioart and Design Award (Netherlands), and an Award of Distinction at Prix Ars Electronica (Austria).

FabLab Dynamic was founded in 2013. Centering on “social design,” the lab utilizes technologies from digital manufacture, and proposes innovative projects targeting different social needs to offer consistent improvement and develop local characteristics. Through interdisciplinary collaboration, the lab strives to establish a diverse platform for interculturality, art, design, industry, architecture, manufacture, and the environment. The lab encourages the concept of open design throughout the production process to facilitate “localization” in “international” frameworks to achieve the objectives of connecting with the global network, innovative research and development, and manufacture.

Ding-Yun Huang is one of the co-founders of Taipei-based multi-creator collective, Co-Coism. He focuses on work-in-collective, site-responding, interdisciplinary practices and skilled at creating a flexible relationship between the audience and the performers. Recently, Ding-Yun initiated a series of projects on “Mind and Consciousness” in the progress of God in Residency, Performing Insanity.

His works were mainly premiered in the Asia-Pacific region. He was also invited as a residency artist, facilitator, and guest curator in Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Belgium), Gorki Theater Herbstsalon (Berlin), ADAM—Asia Discover Asia Meetings (Taipei), Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (Melbourne), Dance Nucleus (Singapore).

Guy Ben-Ary, is a Perth based artist and researcher. He currently works at SymbioticA, an artistic laboratory dedicated to research, learning and hands-on engagement with the life sciences, which is located within the University of Western Australia. Recognized internationally as a major artist and innovator working across science and media arts, Guy specializes in biotechnological artwork, which aims to enrich our understanding of what it means to be alive. Guy’s work has been shown across the globe at prestigious venues and festivals from the Beijing National Art Museum to San Paulo Biennale to the Moscow Biennale. His work can also be seen in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. His work Bricolage won an award of excellence in the Japan Media Arts Festival, cellF and Silent Barrage were awarded Honorary Mentions in Prix Ars Electronica (2017, 2009) and Silent Barrage also won first prize at VIDA, a significant international competition for Art and Artificial Life. Interested in how art has the potential to initiate public debate on the challenges arising from the existence of these liminal lives, Guy creates artworks designed to problematize current and emergent bio-technologies’ influence on the shifting forces that govern and determine life, death and sentience.


A Glimpse of the Mind Landscapes_Rejuvenation
A Glimpse of the Mind Landscapes_Transformation
A Glimpse of the Mind Landscapes_Out-of-body
God in Residency - Misheard Medium
God in Residency - Scenario Incarnation
Project ZERO|Episode One



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