By Pessy Lee, Translated by Angela Chu
As the performance began, the audience enter a dimly lit room with dazzling neon lights of every color. Inside a tub lies a dancer, seemingly pondering but an empty gaze dominates his face. From the performance group Co-coism (明日和合製作所), “Unspeakable” (恥的子彈) occupies the third and fifth floor of the exhibition place Venue (濕地). The use of bright colors and bold elements brings a burst of energy into the space, while sand flowing down the stairs symbolizes the passing of time. With no set rules or limits, the audience is encouraged to roam about, observing from their own point of view and at their own pace.
While they wander around and try to piece together the whole picture from sounds and steps of performers, the lack of information makes the urge to pry and peek grow stronger. In one part of the performance, spectators scramble to a small crack of a door, hoping for a glimpse of what might be inside. As they look on with voyeurism conquering their minds, humiliation takes over in their hearts. For each and every one of us, there are things that we cannot help doing but are too afraid to admit. Throughout the performance, humiliation is not only omnipresent in the audience, but also within the exhibition space, as with in daily life, where this embarrassed and ashamed feeling also spreads throughout our society.
“While I was designing the stage and the flow of how the audience might move through the performance space, I placed two windows facing each other. This allows the audience to see two performers at the same time and in the same place, recreating the feeling of how we sometimes peek at what our neighbors do through the window,” Stage Designer Jaivi Chen (陳嘉微) expressed.
Interacting with the audience from time to time is a cast of a twenty-year-olds, they dazzle with their mature performances and fearless manners. The only actress An-Chi Lee (李安琪) does not hold back with her character of a wild and free-spirited women. Together with actor Wen-Hao Chang (張汶皓) , the duo stuns on stage in the art of seduction and passion. As for the tension of love and passion between same sex couples, Shih-Yi Tseng (曾士益) performs with an intensity that leaves you blushing and your heart racing.
The entire performance constantly deals with “hushed discussions” and brings the dark side of humanity under the light, carefully depicting the tension and collision between people and the weakness in human character. For the more conservative Asian audiences, it is a fresh new theatrical experience. Forms of art and performances have continued to evolve with time. In an era where liberty and democracy are placed upon pedestals once again, Director Kang-Hua Chang (張剛華) choose to give audiences the opportunity to explore art with less restrictions and more freedom of interpretation. You could say this is a performance or an exhibition upon your own free will.