Cold Chain—Hou I-Ting Solo Exhibition

 

 

“Cold chain” is a terminology used in supply chain to refer to a modern technique in systems engineering that relies on the transportation of items from suppliers to processing factories, then to storage facilities, before finally being distributed for sale, all in a low-temperature environment. Such a methodology ensures the quality of the product despite the long process of transportation. This engineering technique is an analogy for mechanisms of governance (control) inherent in modern society, where people are caught up in a complex web of actively manufacturing things and being themselves manufactured products. Each individual is a cog in the state machine, and the interplay of distribution, value exchange, and communication in the engineering work flow serve as a metaphor for the production, transaction, and value exchange of art in today’s world. The exhibition is divided into three sections: the first section is the First Workshop and revolves around the motif of the modern prison system. The prisoners are deprived of their freedom, they are also part of a condensed production line. The artist commissioned a women’s prison to produce, in their own prison workshop, the items displayed in this section. The Second Workshop, is based on the students in girls’ schools during the period of Japanese rule in Taiwan. During World War II, these students provided the Japanese soldiers with back-end support as organizing excursions, attending marine schools, going through practical skills  and physical training. Archive photographs of the above will be on display as part of live performances. The Third Workshop narrates the tale of homeless people who are excluded from the global economy but still play a part in service of the huge urban system.