Sex Stories

It’s no secret that, over the past few decades, Taiwan has become a regional and global leader in promoting gender and sexual diversity. Here, artists and activists routinely push the boundaries of what it means to be human, with all the messy, beautiful, complex attachments and relationships that this entails. While much of the recent movement focus has been on marriage equality and family life, there are a number of artists challenging this narrow purview. Ning Wen, a Taipei-based artist, is someone whose work makes a forceful case that—no less than birth, marriage, and death—sexual relationships and dynamics are important milestones in life worth documenting and celebrating in their own right. His latest Sex Story exhibition dealt with this theme.

毫无疑问,过去数十年里,台湾就性别和性多样化的话题上,举世瞩目。在这里,艺术家与活动家们站在同一联盟,以美丽的、多彩的、丰富的人际和恋爱关系,不断推动着人类生存意义的边界。尽管近来所举办的运动主要围绕婚姻平等、家庭生活展开,但仍有一部分艺术家尝试持续突破这一狭窄的范畴。居住在台北的艺术家宁文(Ning Wen)正在用自己的作品极力证明:性关系和性别的流动性,是和人类出生、结婚以及死亡同等重要的事情,值得被纪念与庆祝。他最近的“性爱摄影”(Sex Story)便是围绕该主题展开。

Despite the generally open-minded atmosphere of Taipei, this project wasn’t without its hiccups. While his exhibition was entirely legal, Ning Wen ran into at least one complaint that led to him having to make the case for his artistic vision to local police. Still, he’s undeterred—encouraged to have to the chance to showcase his work even in these circumstances to these enforcers of social propriety. Despite the potentially controversial subject matter, though, his work isn’t just about sex itself exactly or the merely pornographic, prurient side of contemporary art. It’s about what happens between real people before, during, and after sexual exploration and encounters. I spoke with him about this ongoing project.


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