Taipei and Tainan

The purpose of this blog is to invite you to travel east with us, specifically to Taiwan, a small volcanic island that has been colonized for centuries, but is suddenly coming into its own. Artists are mirrors and rebels, we speak a common language. Our hope is to experience, reflect upon, and create work about Taiwan from many perspectives, in its heightened moment of radical self definition.

Due East invites multidisciplinary artists from across the world to create new works that reflect issues of belonging and separation, to look within and without, while exploring Taiwan’s history and culture. For centuries, colonial powers vying for control practically destroyed Taiwanese culture and memory.  Under the Qing dynasty rule, due to the dominance of the Han Chinese,  the aboriginals were marginalized and killed; during Japanese occupation, Taiwanese culture was denied; after 1945 Taiwanese culture and history was suppressed by Chinese nationalism (KMT). Since the 1980’s, the society and especially the artists have slowly begun to seek and construct self-identification.

Special thanks to the wonderful and talented artists we met in Taipei and Tainan. In one collective voice, they echoed three striking words:

We are here.

Studio visits:

Taipei artists: Joyce Ho, Liao Chien Chung, Ji-hong Lee, Wu Tien Chang, Chia En-Jao, I Ting Hou.

Tainan artists: Chen Yen-Yi, Huang-Ti Lin, Lin Shu Kai, Huang Yi-Min, Chiang Li-Ren, Lee Hsu-Pin, Chen Po-I

Special thanks to:

Dar Kuen Wu, Co-curator of Taipei Biennial 2016 and Head curator at TAF

Lee Hsiangling, Director of TAF and Jow-Jiun Gong, Culture Lab@TAF

Chen Yen-Yi and Huang Yi- Min, Directors of Absolute Art Space in Tainan

and to Hsu, Yuan-Ta, curator and professor who translated for us.


Due East is the third project in a quartet of volcanic island explorations. Due North (2014) explored Iceland, Due South (2017), Sicily. Due East (2020) explores Taiwan, from both insider and outsider perspectives.





Earthquake in Hualien

Our friend Amy Feiereisel and brother Neil were asleep in their hostel during last night's earthquake in Hualien, on the east coast of Taiwan. We are relieved that they are safe and hope that those still trapped are rescued. We met Amy in Sicily during Due South; it was she who suggested Taiwan for Due East (her mother is Taiwanese). As a volcanic island, she found Taiwan similar to Sicily in many ways, not just in its geological wonders, but also in terms of its vulnerability and resilience.

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Taipei, Taichung, Tainan, Kaohsiung

First trip to Taiwan 2/15/18 -3/4/18, stay tuned!

Marianne Bernstein and Cindi Ettinger will be traveling together, exploring the island and meeting Taiwan's best contemporary artists. Bernstein has worked for decades on temporary or nomadic projects designed to push the boundaries of both how art is made and experienced by others. Participating artists work locally and internationally across many disciplines; cross-fertilization and collaboration is encouraged.  

We are grateful to artist Joyce Ho and anthropologist Claudia Tseng in Taiwan for their generous assistance.

Thanks to: TKG+ gallery and Ellen Ko, Executive Cultural Officer at Taipei Cultural Center in NYC

Featured on the Artists page: Joyce Ho: Visibility, 2017, painting on mirror, wires, lightbulb, variable dimensions; Dream about me, 2017, fiber glass, 48x48x165cm; and Pull me up softly, 2017, kinetic sculpture, 75x75x320cm. Courtesy of TKG+Gallery in Taipei.