News > UNIVERSALITY - Tiong Ang at 1st Asia Biennial / 5th Guangzhou Triennial

UNIVERSALITY - Tiong Ang at 1st Asia Biennial / 5th Guangzhou Triennial

December 03 2015



Tiong AngÂ’s new work Â’UNIVERSALITY - DECORUM OF THOUGHT AND DESIREÂ’ (2015), presented at the 1ST ASIA BIENNIAL / 5TH GUANGZHOU TRIENNIAL as a total installation, brings together a diversity of reflections and subjective perspectives on how contemporary living intersects between ideas of autonomy, intercultural traffic, formal and informal exchange and our collective comprehension of the material world and its representations.

The work aims to bridge wide-ranging doubts about ‘universality’ in transcultural discourse and aesthetic experimentation, revealing a deepening crisis in the perception of the term’s validity. In a framework of constantly shifting standards and moving conditions, Tiong Ang interprets the presence of aesthetic universality as an artistic fiction. Based on the model of the corporate television studio as a site of anthropological and archival circuitry, the work mainly explores the human image of today and its media based conditions, from ethnic or gender stereotypes to the flows of genre-based representations of ‘cultural transmission’ and ‘superdiversity’. Processed within a structure of collaborative and performative settlements, the work is set up as a determinedly multivocal exercise, since the meta-artist or fictional producer ‘Tiong Ang’ shared aesthetic and creative resolutions with a contrasted group of other artists and designers.

Visitors are welcomed in a maze of decorum; a decorated architecture of in-exact nature has transformed the room into an abandoned television studio. This immersive ambience is to survey a multitude of conceptions that consider a so-called Â’universalityÂ’ of human presence and thus of artistic aspiration, in a series of fictional characters and settings. Efforts of programming education, information and entertainment on universal values of cultural progress, free speech and global exchange have fallen victim of erosion and failure.
What has remained are the clandestine stories of a dispatched anchor woman, the impasses of the European man, a disoriented TV demonstrator showing improper props, and an African actor so estranged from his live identity that his prophetic rant on the universality of human rights can only be understood as a reminder of the need for a genuine and more relational understanding between the individual and collectivist ideologies. The so-called props of these fictional broadcasts -everyday objects that were once collected on behalf of their temporal functionality are now exposed as symbolic items to signify a conflict between cumulated minds and the singular, human body. Above and after all, abstract animations (of subject and object, of audience and act) recall the desire to defy psychological laws of gravity and time, in order to awaken our inconspicuous belief in a collective imagination and a community of belonging.

TIONG ANG HAS COLLABORATED WITH ALEJANDRO RAMIREZ, CINEMATOGRAPHER, ARTIST / DONGYOUNG LEE, GRAPHIC DESIGNER / ROBERT WITTENDORP, WEB DESIGNER, PERFORMER, ARTIST / LOUWRENS DUHEN, MULTIMEDIA DESIGNER / SINTA WULLUR, MUSIC COMPOSER / ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE, ANDRES NOVO, ARCHITECTURE AND CONSTRUCTION ADVISORS / HEEKYUNG RYU, INGRID SANGHEE EDWARDS, HIROOMI HORIUCHI, ANASTASIA STAROSTENKO, AND ATONE NIANE, PERFORMERS / ARTISTS

UNIVERSALITY - DECORUM OF THOUGHT AND DESIRE: 8 FILMS (A SHORT HISTORICAL FEATURE FILM, A NEWS BROADCAST ANNEX YOUTUBE CHANNEL, A TELESHOPPING VIDEO, TWO 3D ANIMATIONS, A DOCUMENTARY PERFORMANCE, ANALOG NOISE AND A WEB BROWSER) / 19 POSTERS / OBJETS TROUVEES IN VITRINES / IN-EXACT ARCHITECTURE / PODIUM FOR PERFORMANCE

Artist Tiong Ang is also tutor of the MA Fine Art programme at MaHKU.


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