JIA-JEN LIN, FUNES' BROKEN MIRROR
April 21 to May 23, 2018
For a few seconds only, I somehow captured them
They sneaked in, and permanently live inside of my body
Every time when I recall them, they show up in different shapes and sizes
I don’t know if they even exist
404, the page cannot be found
A deferred message echoes back and forth in the long corridor on the way to work
Until one day it suddenly disappears as the layer of mist on my shower mirror
“Funes’ Broken Mirror” explores certain human experiences that are shared among many of us, such as loss, alienation, adaption, and change. In the process of searching for and reconfiguring memories, I transcribe the abstract process into visual presentations and remap them into new terms and terrains through a variety of physical and visual experiences.
Inspired by the character of Ireneo Funes in Jorge Luis Borges’ novella Funes the Memorious, a man whose memories are forever imprinted in his mind as a vast mirror of the world, I envision myself in his mind so I can reimagine how those glimpses of moments would have looked and felt like during one of his sleepless nights. While digging through those lucid, instantaneous, and indistinct moments of my life, I reconnect certain fragments of objects and memories that converge upon one space, despite the differences in location and time.
By combining new and old elements, I re-edit sculptures, objects, and videos that I have collected from people I met in the past. I modify and juxtapose them in a new environment structured with mirror-finished stainless-steel sheets and a video projection invading the ceiling. A tree stump pulled out from the ground is now painted in neon orange and lifted high above us. A plaster-cast hand with a broken figure is facing a mirrored surface and trying to reach the other hand. Video footage of steam is reflecting and overlapping onto different surfaces. Some of my late husband’s sculptures are displayed in ways they did not used to be. Since the reflections of the objects and video images resonate with themselves and also with other elements in the space, all of the objects lose their original meanings. They are open for new association and experiences created by whoever enters this seemly hyper-awakening moment that is like Funes’ dream.
Jia-Jen Lin (b. 1980, Taichung, Taiwan) creates images, sculptures, and performances of the human body and its surroundings as a reflection of our psyche. Lin received an MFA in sculpture, installation, and multimedia from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University. Her works have been shown in Queens Museum; Incheon Women Artists’ Biennale, South Korea; Art Taipei; Franconia Sculpture Park, MN; Watermill Center, NY; and gr_und, Berlin. She has participated in artist residencies at the International Studio & Curatorial Program, the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, and the Sculpture Space. She has lived in New York since 2007.
“Funes’ Broken Mirror” is supported by the Ministry of Culture, Taiwan and it will be first presented at Rubber Factory in New York from April 21 to May 23, 2018.