Dancing with
Gutai Art Manifesto 1956 

> Taipei 2020
Cocept, choreography, installation: River Lin
Artistic collaboration and performance: Tien Hsiao-Tzu, Chen Jun-Yu, Chien Shih-Han, Hsu Jia-Ling, Chang Yun-Chen, Chen Hsin-Hung, Eric Tsai, Li Wen-Hao, Chen I-Chien.
Photography documentation: Chen You-wei
Video documentation: Chen Kuan-yu

Production: Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab as part of Re:Play + NPO Dance Archive Network as part of TOKYO REAL UNDERGROUND—Tokyo Tokyo Festival Special 13.

Special thanks: KATO Mizuho

Duration: 5 hours

Premiere: 18 November 2020 at C-Lab Taiwan, as part of the exhibition Re:Play.

Gutai, founded by YOSHIHARA Jiro in Ashiya in 1954, is one of the most remarkable artist collectives and art movements in the postwar-Japan context for its pioneering, radical and performative approach and experimentation on art making. As Gutai Art Manifesto published in 1956 states, “Gutai Art does not alter the material, but brings it to life.”

Through wearing light bulbs, passing through framed papers, moving on the mud, drawing by feet, throwing bottles of pigment, and sculpting smoke on stage, the Gutai artists have challenged boundaries of art, choreographed relations between objects and the body, and conceptually performed intersections of the liveness and visual art.

How Gutai’s conception and practice would arguably chart the history of performance art and inspire a new lexicon of today’s live art is a point of departure for River Lin to conceive this project “Dancing with Gutai Art Manifesto (1956).”

Transforming the Gutai Art Manifesto into a score and revisiting selected works of TANAKA Atsuko, SHIRAGA Kazuo, MURAKAMI Saburo and SHIMAMOTO Shozo among others, this project attempts to replay a series of actions, movements and happenings as expanded choreography straddling painting, sculpture, installation, participation and performance via a collective process and rehearsal.