名稱 digitalWrite (韓旭東,雕刻);
時間 2022/05/13 10:00 ~ 2022/06/12 18:00
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Hsu-Tung Han digitalWrite
Han Hsu-Tung graduated from the Department of Anthropology at National Taiwan University, but he has no formal training in art or sculpture, nor does he teach sculpture to others. Yet over the past three decades he has produced over 400 exquisite pieces of wood sculpture, having developed a unique and thought-provoking style.
Each successive age inevitably gives rise to new forms of artistic expression, and Han’s sculpture is no exception. Having spent many years honing his skills with the dedication of an ascetic monk, quite indifferent to fame and fortune, his work has finally begun to attract the attention it deserves. Indeed, Han’s dedication and zeal are plainly visible in his distinctive sculpture.Han’s style has evolved organically over the past three decades, and in 2010 he began using glued laminated timber (glulam) as his main material, yet his recent work still retains his singular style.
This exhibition highlights the transformation Han’s work has undergone over the past decade, culminating in the production of a series of moving sculptures, the inspiration for which came in 2019, when he noticed a textbook on power mechanics on his daughter’s desk. His curiosity piqued, he soon began to teach himself computer programming. Overcoming the engrained ways of thinking that hamper creative work, after many ups and downs, Han eventually succeeded in completing a sculpture which moves in response to the viewer’s hand gestures—a remarkable combination of creativity and ingenuity!
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2012年從"頭像1號"開始，我嘗試用小塊的角料黏合為"集成材"之後進行雕刻，再將木塊規則或不規則地組合在這些交錯的正、負空間裡面，藉著這種幾何方塊的組合去營造出一種數位感。這個做法其實是在模擬構成電腦螢幕影像的"畫素"，兩者原理相同而且事實上視覺效果也相當接近，只是平面和立體的差別。2013年”解散集合”個展發表之後，國外的朋友把這些作品稱為 "pixelated wood sculpture"(像素木雕)或者歸類到"glitch art"(故障藝術)的一種。
2019年初無意間看到的學機械的女兒桌上擺了一本書，是關於"arduino"的教學。隨手翻閱卻引起我極大的興趣。前言裡便提到是設計給初學和藝術家使用的。因為集成材由長方體木材黏合，因此它本身就存在著運動所需要的直線空間和軌道。所以我上網去找相關的教學，希望能夠藉由微電腦控制馬達讓作品動起來，但是又希望能兼顧作品完成之後仍能凸顯雕塑的性格，而不是被機械的性格掩蓋。整個過程在失敗中探索前進，學得很慢做得也很慢。寫的程式跑不動時就請向女兒請教。隔年"少林"初版完成，但問題太多，2021年又將內部所有構件全部更換。當"少林"的步進馬達聲音響起，木塊開始動起來，我知道其實我提出了一個問題，而不是找到答案；未來它可能要面對許多藝術與科學的質疑。但 ”新"、"變” 本就是藝術家應該信仰的重要價值，我不需要知道這個新嘗試方向是不是正確的。對我自己來說，六十歲了，組構這些軟硬體零件是很燒腦的，戴著放大鏡在接那些複雜的線路是有些辛苦的，而這一切，其實只是期許自己對藝術創作追求”新“與”變“的初衷可以有所交代，如此而已。
When my father passed away in 2012, it was a time of political turmoil, a widening generation gap, and endless public debate. It was also around this time that I became increasingly aware of how rapidly advancing digital technology was having a widespread impact on traditional culture and human behavior. By then, I had been engaged in woodcarving for 25 years and began to feel that my artistic career was entering a new phase.
As a result, instead of producing more sculptures on social and cultural themes, I began to consider adopting a new approach, one reflecting the latest developments of the digital age. Of course, many purists feel that artwork made completely by hand has more intrinsic value than artwork made using power tools; but looking at it from another perspective and seeing that digital technology has already had a major impact on how we view the cultural achievements of past civilizations, it’s inevitable that it will also have an impact on woodcarving. So the real question is not whether woodcarving will be influenced by digital technology, but rather how this influence will play out.
Starting with my sculpture Head 1 in 2012, I began to use small pieces of wood to produce glued laminated timber (glulam). The pieces are joined in both regular and irregular arrangements, interlacing positive and negative spaces, forming a combination of geometric squares reminiscent of the pixels composing a digital image. In this way, the same principles used in generating a flat digital image are used to create a three-dimensional sculpture, and the visual effect is very similar. Following my solo exhibition Gather and Dismiss in 2013, my new style began to be referred to overseas as “pixelated wood sculpture” and classified as a kind of “glitch art.”
Sculpting glulam gives the sculptor a lot of freedom, in that he isn’t constrained by the preexisting shape of a solid piece of wood and it’s possible to create a very large block of wood, subject to the “open time” of the wood glue. What’s more, glulam produces very little waste, and it can even be formed out of previously used timber, making it an environmentally friendly material—especially important in light of the dwindling supply of large pieces of timber suitable for sculpting.
My daughter is studying mechanics and early in 2019, I noticed a textbook on her desk about the Arduino open-source hardware and software technology. I found that the preface was geared to the needs of novices and artists. Since glulam is formed from long rectangular pieces of wood, it has the flexibility required for moving components. I began to consider how tiny motors driven by a computer might be adapted to integrate moving components into a sculpture, but in a low-key way that doesn’t overshadow the sculpture itself. I went online to find out more, but my progress was very slow. And when the program I tried to write didn’t run, I turned to my daughter for some advice. As a result of my work, I came out with Shaolin, my first moving sculpture, in 2020.
Because Shaolin had mechanical problems, I replaced all the internal components the following year. At sixty years of age, I’m not so good at assembling minute and complex electronic components, even when using a magnifying glass; still keeping in mind the fundamental importance of change and innovation in art, I’m okay not knowing where this experiment will lead. In a nutshell, this is my understanding of the role of innovation and change in art and creativity. The moment I heard the sound of all the stepping motors and wooden blocks composing Shaolin begin to move, I knew that I had raised questions relating to art and science that could not yet be answered.
Curator: Hsiao, Chiung-ju