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28|Muddy Buddha

YAO Jui-Chung


10 mins | Solo performance

Society is gradually deteriorating, and many religious groups are practicing individual worship and accumulating wealth by unfair means under the pretext of charity—many people claim to be living Buddhas and make false speeches. When one enters the realm of devils (Muddy), it is like falling into a trap where one cannot discern the world’s true nature. In the name of Buddha, they develop a cult of personality and showed people their supernatural power. When one’s “five aggregates” (matter of form, sensation, recognition, mental formation, and consciousness) are covered, they fall into the endless pursuit of power, desire, wealth, and appearance, being far beyond the reach of the ultimate release, freedom from all obstacles and worries, and the ultimate emptiness. A moment of thought will last for a long time. The Western Pure Land of the Ultimate Bliss and Avici are determined and demonstrated by our thoughts. If all human beings eventually become ghosts and spirits, then what is death exactly?


As a grumpy middle-aged artist with no significant strength and power, I also get lost in the pandemic over the past two years. However, I have been trying to reflect on the “every form is an illusion” thinking in Śūraṅgama Sūtra through monochrome photography I have done over the past ten years. Aside from converting the films into video, I also published a book with the same title as this work. Rather than naming this collection “an illustration book of caution,” perhaps people need more of an enlightening “devil-destroying mantra”!

YAO Jui-Chung

Yao Jui-Chung (b. 1969) was born in Taipei, Taiwan. He received his BFA from the Taipei National University of the Arts in 1994. He is now an adjunct associate professor at the Department of Fine Arts, National Taiwan Normal University. He is also in charge of VT Artsalon and The illusion art studio. Yao’s practice primarily discusses certain absurd situations of humanity. In an earlier period, he used a humorous approach to subvert the so-called “authenticity,” and presented a pretentious, detached “cold reality” unique to Taiwan. In 2010, he launched the Mirage series, in which he photographed unused spaces around Taiwan. In recent years, he completed the Incarnation series based on the concept of “eternal incarnation.” Afterwards, he moved on to photograph the artificial hells in temples, and produced Hell Plus. His solo exhibition Republic of Cynic (R.O.C) of 2020 explored new national identity and the trend of a new Cold War. In the same year, he was invited to curate the Taiwan Biennial.

The 16th Taishin Arts Award – Visual Arts Award | Incarnation ─ Yao Jui-Chung Solo Exhibition

CHEN Mao-Chang (Film Production)

Chen Mao-Chang (b. 1980) was born in Taipei. He holds a BFA from the Taipei National University of the Arts. He is the owner of ART WAR COMPANY, an exhibition technology planning and implementation company. Inspired by the 90s subcultures and the Stanislavski system, Chen prioritizes sensibility. He currently lives somewhere close to the sea, where he experiences the nothingness of life, and generates audiovisual elements. His audio works can be found in many places.

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