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Synchronic Constellation - Le Moulin Poetry Society and its Time: A Cross-Boundary Exhibition
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Synchronic Constellation - Le Moulin Poetry Society and its Time: A Cross-Boundary Exhibition (Review) Appreciation
Exhibition Banner - Synchronic Constellation - Le Moulin Poetry Society and its Time: A Cross-Boundary Exhibition
Exhibition Dates: 2019/06/29 ~ 2019/09/15
Place: 101, 102, 201 Gallery
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Curatorial Team: Huang Ya-li, Sing Song-Yong, Iwaya Kunio


In the southern lands of Taiwan ninety years ago, a rare flower bloomed. Its name was “Le Moulin Poetry Society.” Established in 1933, this poetry society was jointly founded by Japanese and Taiwanese poets, including Yang Chih-chang, Lin Hsui-erh, Li Chang-jui, Chang Liang-tien, Kisi Reiko, and Toda Fusako. In keeping with the new spirit, intellectualism, and lyricism of the time, modernist poetry was the focus of creativity, publication, and literary ideology. In the annals of Taiwanese literary history, the fate of this literary association born during the Japanese colonial era was meteoric, disappearing as quickly as it rose to prominence. At the end of the 1970s, Le Moulin Poetry Society reemerged on the horizons of Taiwanese literary history, igniting heated discussions regarding pre-war Taiwanese modernist literature. Le Moulin Poetry Society was the subject of the 2015 film, Le Moulin. On the one hand, positing it within the literary context of Japanese colonial era and opening up connections to the global modernist trends and movements; and on the other hand, retracing precious fragments from the life experiences, cultural inspirations, and historical incidents encountered by the group of Taiwanese and Japanese poets.

Based on the background described above, the “Synchronic Constellation - Le Moulin Poetry Society and its Time: A Cross-Boundary Exhibition” hopes to further deepen and extend the wave roused by modernist literature and art culture in the Western world and in East Asian countries from the beginning of the 20th century to the 1940s with Le Moulin Poetry Society as a core; and from this, rethink ways in which Taiwan’s cultural workers in the colony formed relationships with Japan, China, Korea, Europe and America. At the same time, contemplate key historical events and their effect on the lives and destinies of Taiwan’s cultural and literary workers.


Le Moulin Poetry Society is at a spatial temporal intersection, located in a star cluster of history, radiating shimmering light. With this as a center, breakthrough linear space and time and moving outward to traverse the historical pulse of prewar and wartime literature, art, theater, photography, music, film, and other artistic paradigms, to detect and receive the electrical current emanating from the world.

“Emergence of Modern Art and Culture” originates in the cities of a new century and a modernist sensibility. “Meditations on Modernity: Translation and Creation” explores the dream chasing artists exploring the Eastern embrace of Western trends. “Speed Drives the Future” forges the truths of a mechanical Utopia. “Collective Response to Surrealism” is a down-to-earth avant-garde dialectic. “Civilization of Machines and Illusions in Art and Culture” constructs the cross-regional artistic practice of the new spiritual artist. “Literature – Anti-Colonial Voices” bears witness to the cultural resistance of the arts society movement. “The Dialectic of Art and Reality” contemplate the distance between aesthetics and politics. “Local Color and Exotic Imagination” is an exposition on the parallax between the local and the foreign realm. “War, politics, decision” describes painterly mirages of war. “A Long White Night” mourns the poet and the aphasia of historical remnants.  


This interdisciplinary art exhibition does not only belong to history, but it belongs moreover to the contemporary. Le Moulin Poetry Society transcended the boundaries of art, moving from literature and film into the art museum. Here it encounters and dialogues with a cornucopia of exhibition objects from various artistic paradigms including original works, reproductions, audio-visual files, documents and texts, bringing the imagination to life in formats that combine new media technologies including sound effects, multimedia installations, and graphic design.

Above the stars, the windmill that symbolizes the poetry society seems like a flower, and dazzles like starlight when it spins. Shimmering, fascinating, and touching, it is an eye of history that ignites literary thought and ideological movements.


Curatorial Team

Lead Curator: Huang Ya-li

Huang is a Taiwanese film director who is interested in the connection and extensibility between image and sound. His first documentary feature entitled, Le Moulin screened in 2016. The film zeros in on the story of Le Moulin Poetry Society, a pioneer in surrealism in Taiwan in the 1930s, and uncovers little known aspects of literary and art history in Taiwan. Immediately after screening, it was awarded with the Golden Horse Awards, "Best Screenplay" and "Best Sound Design" at Taipei Film Festival and was a nominee for the "Bright Future Award" at the International Film Festival Rotterdam.


In the same year, he curated a microexperimental action under the same title, which includes The Black Waves coproduced by Ghost Mountain Ghost Shovel, Hsieh Chung-chi, Ting Li-ping, Liu Fang-yi and Li Shih-yang and Dictionary of Chaos: Addendum performed by Against Again Troupe. The former received nominations for "Best Visual Art Award" and "Performance Art Award" for the 2017 Taishin Arts Awards. He also co-edited with Chen Yun-yuan Le Moulin--Le Moulin Poetry Society and Its Era, which was awarded "Best Editing (self-production category)" and "Book Publishing Award--Government Publishing" in 2016 Taipei International Book Exhibition and Gold Medal at the 2016 Golden Butterfly Award--Publishing Art in Taiwan.

Le Moulin has screened in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nagoya, Yokohama, Hiroshima, Okinawa, Fukushima and Hyogo Prefecture in Japan. It has also toured in Shanghai, Beijing, Tianjin, Nanjing, Luoyang, Zhengzhou, Changsha, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Jinhua, Xian and Wuxi in China, and Huang has engaged in dialogues with 22 curators, art critics, film critics and writers, facilitating in-depth exchange and dialogue in the arts and culture sphere across the two sides of the Taiwan Strait founded on the subjectivity of Taiwanese arts and culture.


Co-Curator: Sing Song-yong

Sing Song-yong earned his doctoral degree in cinematography from the Institute of Performing Arts, Université Paris Nanterre, France and is professor and director at the Graduate Institute of Animation and Film Art, Tainan National University of the Arts. He is currently serving as Chief Editor of Art Critique of Taiwan, Nominator for Taishin Arts Awards and board member of Taiwan Film Institute.

He has curated (Not) Just a Historical Document: Hong Kong-Taiwan Video Art 1980-1990s(2018), REWIND_ Video Art in Taiwan 1983-1999 (2015) and The Eclipse of Documentary: The Transdisciplinary Intersection of Images at the 8th Taiwan International Documentary Festival (2012). He has juried the Golden Horse Awards, National Award for Arts, The Taiwan Presidential Cultural Awards, Taipei Film Festival, Taiwan International Documentary Festival, China Independent Film Festival, Golden Harvest Awards, Kaohsiung Film Festival, S-An Aesthetics Awards, Women Make Waves Film Festival Taiwan, Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Grant for Chinese Studies, Kaohsiung Shorts and Kaohsiung Awards.

His research interests include the aesthetics in contemporary Chinese language films, cinematography and contemporary art, and theories and aesthetics in contemporary French films. He has authored titles including Tsai Ming-Liang: From Cinema to Contemporary/Art(2013) and Projecting Tsai Ming-Liang: Towards Transart Cinema (2014).


Co-Curator: Iwaya Kunio

Iwaya Kunio graduated from the Faculty of Letters, Tokyo University and completed his doctoral program there. He has a wide spectrum of creative and research interests, with titles including Professor Emeritus at the Faculty of Letters, Meiji Gakuin University, scholar in French literature, translator, literature, art, film, city, civilization critic, writer, photographer, traveller and speaker. His research specializations include surrealism, fairy tales and utopia.

He got to know Takiguchi Shuzo and Shibusawa Tatsuhiko when he was a student and started studying and practicing surrealism in the early 1960s. He has published widely on 20th-century literature, art, international cities, film and gardens, which centered on André Breton, Max Ernst, Takiguchi Shuzo and Shibusawa Tatsuhiko. He also serves as director and catalogue writer for exhibitions on Dadaism and surrealism, editor for special magazine editions and speaker at lectures and seminars and holds solo photography exhibitions. His writing includes Surrealism and Art (1976), Surrealism and Novels (1979), What is Surrealism(1996), The Sealed Stars-- Takiguchi Shuzo and Japanese Artists (2004), Man Ray (I Am Riddle) (2004), Game--Surrealism (2013), Travel and Art (2015), Essays on Shibusawa Tatsuhiko--5 Volumes (2017-18). Books he has translated include What Is Surrealism--Soluble Fish by André Breton (1974), The Philosophy of Surrealism (1981) and Dali--The Complete Set(1985-1986; co-translated).

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