Skin in craters like the moon is an exhibition featuring several recent works by Tāmaki Makaurau-based, Taiwanese (Han, Min-nan) artist, Susu 蘇子誠, exploring associations between language and memories through objects, both physical and virtual.
Susu’s work examines how materials of self, such as language and memories, can be carried and preserved as fragments, through acts of travelling. Drawing on their diasporic experience of suspense between Aotearoa and Taiwan, Susu builds digital and physical worlds that recall lived and remembered events, offering a way to claim space for, and preserve these fragments between the the physical and virtual body.
The title Skin in craters like the moon references a lyric in the song Team by New Zealand pop musician Lorde from her 2013 debut album, Pure Heroine. Before moving to East Tāmaki from Taiwan in 2015, Pure Heroine and Lorde were the things from Aotearoa that Susu could relate to, in a way that offered excitement and security for an imagined self that they could become in Aotearoa. Susu considers the reference as another act of recalling, alongside the many other acts of recalling - memories, time and places - which underpin the two video works in this exhibition, Remember to Dive 回溯潛水 (2022) and Coco and Aiai 可可愛愛 (2021-2022).
Remember to Dive 回溯潛水 (2022)* projects an ever-changing circular image onto the ground, framed by overlaid subtitles on four sides. Digital renderings of objects and landscapes layer the artist’s experiences in relation to Tudigong (deity of soil and the ground) and move fluidly between physical and metaphysical states, between the ground and the sky.
Coco and Aiai 可可愛愛 (2021-2022), takes the names of Susu’s two cats who passed away in Taiwan while the artist was living in New Zealand. The video shows a digital rendering of a heart-shaped island, overlaid with written recollections of the beloved family members (in both English and Mandarin), combined with the sound of Susu’s father playing the piano. Creating a world from memories and lived experiences, Susu finds a way to be back with Coco and Aiai.
About Susu 蘇子誠
Susu 蘇子誠 is a Taiwanese (Han, Min-nan) artist living in Tāmaki Makaurau, working in digital fabrication, casting, moving image, and installation.
In 2022, they completed their Bachelor of Fine Arts (Hons) at Elam School of Fine Arts, and were awarded the Iris Fisher Scholarship from Te Tuhi.
Recent exhibitions include: and my roarings are poured out like the waters, Robert Heald Gallery (2023), Pōneke Wellington; Between the Gift and its Reprisal (2022), Artspace Aotearoa, Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland; Music Video (2022), play_station, Pōneke Wellington; The Moon and the Pavement (2022), Ashburton Art Gallery, Waitaha Canterbury (a partnership between The Physics Room and Ashburton Art Gallery).
* Remember to Dive 回溯潛水 (2022) was originally developed for the group show The moon and the pavement at Ashburton Art Gallery, curated by Abby Cunnane and presented in partnership between The Physics Room and Ashburton Art Gallery.