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Travel with Artists Encounter Local Wonder

Welding Poetry: KAO TSAN-HSING Retrospective Exhibition

Welding Poetry: KAO TSAN-HSING Retrospective Exhibition

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Kao Tsan-Hsing (1945–2017) was a modest and diligent sculptor, and a principled manwho dedicated his life to art. I became acquainted with him more than twenty years ago when I was the chief curator of the Exhibition Department at the Taipei Fine Arts Museum. He would often come to the Museum to see exhibitions, believing he could learn about art and get information about international exhibitions. He was a very conscientious artist. Kao's family was in the metalworking business, and at a very early age, he gained intimate knowledge of metalworking tools, materials, and techniques. Throughout his life, he held fast to art, maintaining rigorous discipline and concentration on his feelings about sculpture. Early in his career, he used clay and wood before moving on to his main and most familiar material, steel. Using a variety of industrial tools to cut and weld, Kao gave panels and chunks of steel new features, presenting the essence of form, texture, volume, time and space in his unique steel sculptures. In the history of Taiwanese modern art, Kao is seen as an artist who persevered and cultivated an unconventional sculptural temperament. In 1969, Kao graduated from the Sculpture Department of the National Academy of Arts (today's National Taiwan University of Arts) and went on to develop the richness of his artwork over the course of his life, eventually creating public artworks based on his sculpture. In his early period, themes included life, the cosmos, and the natural world, which can be seen in works such as his 1972 Divine Nature, and 1980 Detached Myself. In the 1990s, Kao liberated his forms to create pure abstraction, but maintained the essential core of sculpture in the structure of his thinking. This change is seen in metal sculptures in the geometric abstraction style, such as the 1991 work Animal Nature, Human Nature, Divine Nature, and his 2001 large-scale public artwork Inheritance and Development- the Presentation of Zhong Pu. In recent years, he emphasized distinctive sculptural language with series composed of discarded metal plates that he collected at automobile factories and then welded together, and with chunks of metal covered with wires patinated in green. These curved and supple wires can be seen in his 2012 work The Song of Antirust, and his 2014 At My Will. Abstract forms in various metal materials create infinite imaginative space in these works.

Welding Poetry: Kao Tsan-Hsing Retrospective Exhibition presents the artist's personal journey of exploration along with a comprehensive study of his art concepts and work, and is organized into four categories: Sculpture, The Beauty of Tools, Public Art, and The Welder at Work (a documentary film featuring interviews with the artist). Kao was ardently passionate about sculpture and had developed his career in both Taiwan and the international art world starting in the 1970s. He was invited to create work in Katzow, Germany, and showed work in many important exhibitions at home and abroad. Welding Poetry presents the artist's oeuvre with nearly one hundred exquisite sketches, sculptures and installation works borrowed from various museums, galleries, private collections, and the artist himself. The exhibition could not have been successful without support from the artist's family, the enthusiastic participation of students, and the generosity of the museums, collectors, and galleries that lent important artworks, and for this, the Museum is grateful. Unfortunately, Kao Tsan-Hsing passed away during the exhibition period from an existing illness, and while we are left grieving, this comprehensive retrospective serves as a fitting memorial to his life and work. We sincerely hope the spirit of Kao Tsan-Hsing's work will live on forever.

Source: Taipei Fine Arts Museum.《Welding Poetry: KAO TSAN-HSING Retrospective Exhibition》

007 - Preface

009 - Artist Statement
   Kao Tsan-Hsing / Artist

018 - Dialogues between Material and Mind ──Kao Tsan-Hsing's Poetics of Steel
   Hsiao Chong-Ray / professor of art history, Department of History, National Cheng Kung University

030 - Welding Poetry ──Kao Tsan-Hsing Retrospective Exhibition
   Liú Yung-jen / Curator, Taipei Fine Arts Museum

033 - Works / Plates
269 - Artist Biographies
272 - Art and Documents
275 - Acknowledgements

ISBN: 9789860552737
Publish: 2018-01
Author: Taipei Fine Arts Museum
Artist: Kao Tsan-hsing
Publisher: Taipei Fine Arts Museum
Cover: Hardcover
Page: 276
Size: 28.8 x 25.5 x 3 cm

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