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LOCATION ONE: art - talk - technology - music
LOCATION ONE: art - talk - technology - music


XU TAN
Searching for Keywords


opening: Wednesday November 28
6-8 pm

Please join us in the Main Gallery this Wednesday for the opening of Searching for Keywords, an interactive multimedia installation created by Chinese artist Xu Tan.

Xu Tan’s work deals with the hidden motivations and intentions of individuals through a high-tech analysis of their vocabulary. “Searching with Keywords” is the New York leg of an ongoing project which the artist launched in 2005. It began with a series of interviews of different groups of people who are active in Chinese society; the video interviews were then carefully analyzed, and 100 keywords were identified based on meaning (social values), frequency (repetition), sensitivity (political), and popularity (trendyness). These Keywords reveal much about the values and motivations of contemporary Chinese society, they give a pulse of the current social climate, and present an insight into the collective social consciousness of China.

The project will be unfolding simultaneously in Beijing, China, in Sittard, Holland, and in New York, through a website created specifically for this happening. Gallery audiences in NY will be invited to interact with the keywords, which are presented by means of four video projections and four computer stations equipped with laptops, video cameras, and Internet connections. Their reactions and input will be immediately transmitted through the website to the other venues where the installation is present. These texts will in turn generate other keywords that will help reveal the opinions and attitudes of a western audience towards the current status of China and its role in the global environment.

LOCATION ONE: art - talk - technology - music
stills from the video interviews of «Searching for Keywords» by Xu Tan

The exhibition runs through Saturday, January 26th, 2008


About the Artist
Xu Tan was born in Wuhan, Hubei Province in 1957 and currently lives in Shanghai and Guangzhou. In the early 1990s he joined the “Big Tail Elephant Group” in Guangzhou with Lin Yinlin, Chen Shaoxiong and Liang Juhui. The aim of this group is to develop critical strategies for negotiating the rapidly changing economic and cultural life in China. He was among the first artists to participate in Location One’s International Residency Program in 2002, and his work has been shown around the world including P.S.1 in New York, Biennale di Venezia, Berlin Biennial, Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art in Brisbane, Australia, Guangzhou Triennial, Taipei Biennial, De Appel in Amsterdam. Recent solo shows were held at the DAAD Gallery in Berlin, at the Vitamin Creative Space in Guangzhou, at BizArt is Shanghai. 

Location One acknowledges Vitamin Creative Space for support and maintenance of the
website www.xutan-keywords.com and thanks Made in Mirror Foundation for their contribution.

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LOCATION ONE is a not-for-profit organization devoted to convergence between visual, performing and digital arts in a time of rapidly changing technology. We invite artists from different disciplines and from different countries to work in our studios. We ask them to experiment with the new technologies of artistic creation, interaction and delivery. We urge them to collaborate in creating new works and give them virtual Internet spaces and physical gallery space to exhibit the results. Our goals are to foster the creation of new work, new forms of expression, and new capabilities in artists, and to advance new awareness in all those we reach.