BAKER SALON / Cheng Ting

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Specification

  • Book Size: 13.8 x 18.5 cm
  • Pages: 30 (cardboard pages)
  • Printing: CMYK offset
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-986-93595-0-4
  • Publication Date: Sep 2016
  • Publisher: dmp editions
  • Limited Edition: 500

(English follows.)
藝術家鄭婷一直以來都善於運用拍攝對象搭配物件及環境做為創作手法,她習於將人們放置於拍攝場景中,有如道具般成為畫面的一部分。如同她認為自己總處在場景的邊緣,以旁觀者的角度觀察自身的生活,與她所認定的主體保持一定的距離。抽離的視角讓她得以將對事物的觀察,以全新的樣貌呈現在我們眼前,就像是每天路過的十字路口從太空站上觀測的樣子必定大不相同(這個比喻或許打得有些極端了),鄭婷創建的世界觀總是能讓人驚艷/嚇。

鄭婷自2010年移居倫敦,對陌生的語言與文化的震盪注入至她的創作之中。由於想家,她興起了動手做饅頭的念頭,卻在陰錯陽差之下開始了各式麵包*的製作。長期以來就習慣自己動手製作,透過勞動獲得的實體收穫,讓藝術家在焙製麵包的同時安撫了自己身處異鄉的不安。麵團的揉捏與烘焙,是她處理異鄉生活的方式,從中進而延伸至與人的相處——便成了髮辮與麵包結合的Baker Salon系列。碰觸他人、進一步親手整理頭髮與編髮,鄭婷以此建立某種臨時的親密關係,甚至因此舉行了相關的工作坊。延續她一貫的執行風格,「人」在她的世界裡,時常是介於道具與合作者之間的關係,她與被攝者的互動是她創作的一部分,創作過程充滿的不確定性也是她作品保持活力與有機性的要素之一。

將這系列作品作為一本出版品,在形式上使用了接近學齡前甚至嬰兒童書的紙板書與小開本,不只是希望可以藉由童書象徵的閱讀姿態讓讀者與這些作品更為接近,更希望讓讀者聯想起幼時的閱讀經驗:更單純傾向圖像以及翻閱書頁間的動作。此外,呼應整個計畫著力在「勞動」與「互動」,鄭婷也將自己配製的麵包食譜分享於書中,期待有興趣的人能在閱讀後,也試著動手去做、開發新的「麵包頭」。(Publisher)

*在英文中,包子饅頭、圓麵包以及梳成包頭的髮型皆可使用bun一詞。

 

Artist Cheng Ting is adept at combining the subject of her portrayal with objects and environments; when she places people in her photography, they, like stage props, become part of her visual construct. In a similar way, the artist sees herself as always being on the fringe of the scene that is her life, observing it as a spectator whilst maintaining a certain distance from what she deems to be the main subject. This disengaged viewpoint allows her to present her observations in an entirely new appearance. It is similar to how an intersection that someone crosses daily looks entirely different when viewed from a space station. Extreme as this metaphor may be, it is true that the worldview that Ting constructs is always astonishing.

Since moving to London in 2010, Ting has been instilling in her creations the impact that a foreign language and culture has had on her. Nostalgia prompted her to bake homemade buns, which led to her making all sorts of buns*. Having always taken comfort in the rewards of handmaking, the artist was able to assuage her unease of being in a foreign place by baking. The kneading and baking of dough is her method of handling living abroad, a method which she extended to her interaction with people by braiding their hair. Thus, the Baker Salon series was born; by touching, arranging, and braiding other people’s hair, the artists creates temporary intimacy that has resulted in her hosting workshops related to Baker Salon. Consistent with her ideal and style of creating, Ting sees people as being halfway between a stage prop and a collaborator. Her interaction with the photographed subject is part of her creation, and the uncertainty that fills the process of creating is a key element to preserving the vitality and organic growth of her work.

The series was published in a small board book format, similar to a book for preschool children or even babies. This format was chosen not only in the hopes that its appearance would pull the readers closer to the work, but also that readers might recall their experiences of reading as a child, which tilted towards a simpler act of flipping through images. Furthermore, this project emphasizes the concepts of labor and interaction. The artist even shares her recipes for buns and looks forward to people making and developing new “bun” after reading the book. (Publisher)


*In the translation, the term “bun” encompasses steamed buns, steamed stuffed buns, and other round breads, even the “bunhead” hairstyle in which hair is arranged into the shape of a bun.