Dust Wu Chi-Tsung

Dust, Wu Chi-Tsung

Following Wu Chi-Tsung’s 2006 residency at Site Gallery, Sheffield, the artist has returned with Dust, a mesmerising video installation where a live feed captures and then projects, large scale, images of the dust in the gallery space. Chi-Tsung finds the small, uncontrolled moments of serendipity and coincidence; translating them through video or light and re-presenting them in the gallery space. In Dust, the camera and projector work together to show what the human eye can’t see, and the tiny particles of human skin floating in the air are elevated to sparkling sequins; from repulsive to seductive.

Dust Wu Chi-Tsung

Image Courtesy Of Site Gallery

 In an adjacent room in Site Gallery, Chi-Tsung presents Crystal City 003, an incarnation created from the shadows of plastic containers, cast by a moving LED light.  Presumably influenced by his time training as an architect, the Crystal City is reminiscent of a CAD drawing or a floating gods-eye view of a toweringly tall sci-fi cityscape.  Alluding to new building developments in inner city areas of contemporary Asia, and perhaps critiquing the materialism and commercialism that comes hand in hand with technological progress, this work quietly and meditatively divulges another world beyond the ordinariness of its individual components.

This is a recurring idea in Wu Chi-Tsung’s work; in Rain (2002), made when he was a student in Taipei, raindrops appear to flash across an image of a bridge.  Simply by setting the shutter speed extremely high, the downwards line of a raindrop that we usually see because of the slowness of our eyes is revealed as something very different—now each individual raindrop has been captured mid-fall, sparkling across the screen.

It is these very simple procedures that stand out in Chi-Tsung’s works; and here in Sheffield it seems that he has simplified his practice right down to the bare bones.  This work is comprised of the particles that before the nineteenth century were considered the smallest substance—marking the boundary between the world we see and the world of the unknown—Dust.  The mysticism of dust, apparent when you catch it twisting and spinning in the golden sunlight pouring in through a window, is condensed and epitomised in this work.  Galaxies of green and blue flit and flicker across the wall as they continually move in and out of focus.  We are charmed by the romance, the magic, and the very special quality of this created world that is simultaneously real and unreal.

Visiting Sheffield for the day? Site Gallery on Brown Street is only a couple of minutes walk from Sheffield train and bus stations.  The gallery is wheelchair accessible, and also houses a small shop and café, which serves lovely homemade cakes and frothy coffees.  It’s very close to SIA gallery, Bloc Projects, Millennium Galleries and Graves Gallery if you fancy a cultural day out.

Sheffield native? Why not try Site’s free reading groups on 17th April and 1st May, or try breathing meditation set against the backdrop of Wu Chi-Tsung’s beautiful installation? Full details are on Site Gallery’s website, http://www.sitegallery.org

Wu Chi-Tsung Dust

Site Gallery 4th April – 31st May 2014

Opening times: Tuesday-Saturday 11am-5.30pm


Written By Posy Jowett

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