Founded by Kuo I-Chen in 2017, STUPIN is a platform for artist residencies where individual artists network in the form of studio swaps and as local cultural guides that are much like pins in Google Maps, hence the acronym STUPIN. This platform allows artists to weave a new web of artist residency connections on an international scale.
Kuo I-Chen’s previous body of work was characterized by an artistic language that was poetic and situational. Pivoting around the environment, the fleeting sense of belonging, and a rootless state of mind, his past practice explored the true nature of life through an examination of nonexistence. The artist shifted his focus when he began participating in international artist-in-residence programs in 2012. Enlivened by diverse cultures and milieus, Kuo came to realize the profound impact and benefit of residencies on artistic practice. In addition to bringing artists closer to the international limelight by involving them in international art spheres, residency programs also nurture opportunities for artistic exchange and exhibitions. In recent years Kuo has witnessed many hurdles that face artists in residence, which inspired the inception of STUPIN. The idea is to integrate spaces and social networks around the world through an online platform, along with a simplified application procedure for artist-in-residence programs. Taking a creative turn with STUPIN, Kuo has transformed his practice into more than just a social inquiry, but a solution, in hopes of rejuvenating the artist residency scene via digital means.
STUPIN.ORG, Kuo’s solo exhibition at TKG+ Projects, is the first embodiment of the studio-swap residency. In converting the gallery space into an artist’s studio, and bringing together the cradle for art, the finished work, and the commercial end, Kuo investigates the relationship between the artist, the work, and the space it occupies. For this exhibition, Kuo swaps studios with Portuguese artist Filipe Cortez, who works across such mediums as performance, oil painting, sculpture, and installation in surveying the ephemeral landscape of memory, time, and the city through his site-specific work. Cortez and Kuo will continue their respective practices in each other’s hometown — Cortez in Taipei, Taiwan and Kuo in Porto, Portugal — and connect the two cities through their experiences of cultural exchange and networking.
On the platform of STUPIN, every artist’s studio is a residence, and every artist can be a local cultural guide. Through the act of sharing, every city can be a studio for you. The pronunciation of “STUPIN” is similar to that of “stupid,” which echoes the foolishness of an artist absorbed in art making; the same foolishness that leads to unexpected outcomes. Hence the STUPIN philosophy: to face the future with an open mind, to keep moving forward into the unknown. Be STUPIN! Be smart!
About Kuo I-Chen
Kuo I-Chen was born in 1979 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan and currently lives in Taipei. Through a diverse range of mediums, including new media, installation, and video, Kuo creates a poetic artistic language that is uniquely his own. Concerned with the rootless state of the human mind, he seeks the transient sense of belonging in the modern environment, while exploring the essence of life through examining nonexistence. In 2005, Kuo became the youngest artist ever to represent Taiwan in the Venice Biennial. He received the Taipei Arts Award in 2005, as well as the nomination for the Top 5 visual artists of the Taishin Arts Award in 2008. In 2016, he published a picture book titled “A Baby Tooth Fallen Out of the Universe,” and in 2017 he founded STUPIN, a studio-swap platform for artists. He has exhibited internationally, including in the Taipei Biennial, Singapore Biennial, Sydney Biennial, Seoul International Media Art Biennale, as well as at the ZKM and other major art institutions.
About Filipe Cortez
Filipe Cortez was born in Portugal in 1986, and currently lives and works in Porto and New York. He holds a master’s degree in painting from the Faculdade de Belas Artes da Universidade do Porto, graduating with the best classification, and a bachelor’s degree in painting from the same institution. He has been exhibiting regularly since 2007; highlights include his recent exhibitions in New York City and STUPIN.ORG (2017) in Taipei. In 2015, he completed a six-month artist residency at the Residency Unlimited (New York), from which many collaborations with galleries and curators sprouted. Cortez works within the fields of painting, sculpture, and site-specific installation in his examination of memory and architectural spaces. The multidisciplinary approach has become increasingly evident in his work, for which he has received various awards and honorary mentions.