04.25 獨立策展人的「空間經營學」_ 主講人：蔡明君 x 主持人：王柏偉
04.25 Art Space Management from an Independent Curator’s Perspective _ Ming-Jiun TSAI (Speaker) X Po-wei Wang (Host)
(For English please scroll down)
英國倫敦大學金匠學院策展學碩士，獨立策展人，曾與朋友共同經營 Derive Art衍空間+ Cafe Amarcord。作品「院」獲2013年台新獎入圍，曾經策劃過視覺藝術聯盟2012藝術家博覽會《群聚 A Gathering》以及20號倉庫的《翻轉吧！倉庫 | In/side/out》等展覽。
A nominee for this year’s Taishin Visual Arts Award, Ming-Jiun TSAI plays the role of both independent curator and art space administration manager. We are delighted to have her share her experience in directing art spaces as well as her thoughts on her recently nominated artwork.
Speaker – Ming-Jiun TSAI
Host – Po-Wei Wang
Po-Wei Wang, born in 1975, is a Ph.D. candidate of sociology at the Department of Culture Studies, Witten/Herdecke University, Germany. He is a art critic and a curator. His research interests include Media Theory, History of Contemporary Art, Sociology of Culture and Art, and Art/Science/Technology (AST). He has received the Digital Art Criticism Award and the NCAF Art Review Award. Translate Niklas Luhmann´s Liebe als Passion: Zur Codierung von Intimität together with Chin-Hui Chang. Ongoing projects include “Theories of Exhibition”, and “Art, Biology, and Laboratory: A Probe into the Genealogy of Bio-Art”. He is currently the special contributor to the Artitude and Artist Magazine. Articles please see http://www.itpark.com.tw/people/essays/667
THE SPACE MAGICIAN
An Independent Curator’s Take on “Space Management”
On April 25th, TCAC invited curator Tsai Ming-Jiun, nominee for the 2012 Taishin Visual Arts Award, to share with the audience not only her experiences in managing art spaces, but also the concept behind her nominated work—Yard.
Tsai Ming-Jiun said that Yard was an exhibition limited to the Tunghai University Art Gallery. She was invited by Tunghai University to make the new exhibition. After closely observing the architecture of the Tunghai Art Gallery in and out, she decided to create an exhibition space without any barriers or walls. Tsai Ming-Jiun said her inspiration came from observing the surroundings of the university. She realized the beauty of the landscape, and with the sight of the students and the neighborhood residents, the campus itself was like a modern community. This idea was incorporated in her curatorial concept: The art gallery branched out into the campus, and transformed into a small community. The main walls of the gallery became buildings, while the rest of the space is the yard.
The exhibition Yard included the work of seven artists from different countries. Each piece of work was made specifically for this exhibition. After Tsai Ming-Jiun communicated her curatorial concept to the artists, the artists individually created their work from their personal impressions of yards. Since the artists and curator did not have the opportunity to collectedly discuss the interior arrangement of the exhibition, most of the distributing and arrangement of the work was decided by the artists themselves after they arrive at the gallery. Tsai Ming-Jiun expressed how this is one major characteristic of curating exhibitions on limited spaces—the unpredictability. She could not fully control the final display of the exhibition, including the routing, for she could only follow the intuition of the artists and herself. However, it is this sense of uncertainty that captivates her. Exhibitions limited to locations hold unpredictable outturns, but usually hold more surprises as well.
To her, limited curating is not simply displaying artwork to the public. In the process of curating, she concentrates more on the previous work of the artists, and she considers whether the way of thinking and creating of the artists match the tone of the exhibition. Moreover, she forms her perspectives and objectives according to the historical context and background of the space. She then turns those ideas into literal curatorial concepts. Therefore, she believes that limited curating to her is more like a form of creation.
Tsai Ming-Jiun has applied her curating skills onto commercial art spaces as well. She ran Derive Art with her friend, an art space/coffee shop located in Taichung. The first floor was an exhibition space, while the second floor was the coffee shop Café Amarcord. They did not aim at any particular target customers and welcomed anybody ranging from the general public to art collectors. Yet they had trouble with making ends meet through art transactions, and decided to end their business in the end.
Afterwards, she retraced her management of this art space, and she discovered that the most important thing was to balance income and costs and to reduce cost of personnel. At the starting point of the business, funding support was crucial to withstand the period when they were less known. In terms of curating strategies, she also admits she was too idealistic in emphasizing more on art concepts rather than the preferences of collectors. Nonetheless, she believes managing art spaces and independent curating are not unparalleled lines. Although the former is more commercial-oriented and the latter simply concerns exhibitions, she firmly thinks these two are both efforts in promoting art, in letting the work of artists be seen, in constructing the value of their artwork. She believes these two are not conflicting in any way.