Zoo Hypothesis

動物園假說|Zoo Hypothesis
Video Installation

This work is a cooperation with the long-time collaborator, scriptwriter Chen Wan-Yin.

The work is about a scriptwriter and a performer having a conversation in an animal taxidermist’s studio. They attempt to come up with a performance, exploring the relationship between ‘gestures’ and ‘horrors’.

The conversation revolves around two events from Japanese Taiwan during World War II. One is the memorial ceremony held in a zoo to commemorate animals that died during military operations. Animals such as elephants and orangutans were trained to kneel as a symbolic posture for mourning. The other reference is the 1944 massive animal execution in the Taiwanese zoo, intended to prevent civilian casualties caused by animals after the US military had bombed the cities. The unfortunate animals were then turned into taxidermy to preserve their movements and postures.

In addition to the dialogue between the two characters, both the Taiwanese Zoo and the zoo's taxidermy studio were architecturally reconstructed using 3D scanning technology.

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