Last August I went with three friends to Ju Ming’s incredible art museum outside of Taipei, Taiwan. Ju Ming is a 74-year-old, world-famous sculptor and artist from Taiwan. After traveling by bus for over an hour to the mountainous area of Jinshan, we took a taxi up a mountain to the museum. Photography is allowed, so I made sure to get 3,ooo photos. Here are the best ones!
Many of the outdoor sculptures depict soldiers in the Nationalist-Communist Civil War when supporters of the KMT political party fought against the CPC (Communist Party of China). The KMT supporters ended up in outlying islands such as Taiwan. This soldier is carrying the Taiwanese flag.
These sculptures were spread throughout the property (acres and acres), and many were in large platoons as in the group partially photographed here. Ju Ming said he made one of these soldiers per day… out of bronze, I believe. It would have taken me all day just to count how many sculptures in the “Armed Forces” series alone.
Here a couple is chaperoned by an Auntie who is either bored or disapproving.
My friend acts as the Auntie for a different couple.
Ju Ming’s Thaichi Series is also made out of bronze
The navy and their ship
My friend Shelly and me. Shelly is a great friend, the epitome of an accommodating, smiling Taiwanese lady. This is the view right past that navy ship.
Waiting in line at the… post office …?
Though this wasn’t technically part of the art, it was for me!
Sadly, I really like this down-on-her-luck lady
the more provocative sculpture
Ju Ming, himself
At first glance, it appears as if Ju Ming might be saying that marriage as an institution traps people. When you look closer (and read the inscription written in white in this almost pitch black room), you realize that the the key and lock to this cage are on the inside, saying that it is up to each couple to decide how to handle their commitment to one another. In other words, marriage is what you make of it.
This is a juxtaposition of someone who has imprisoned himself and someone who has been imprisoned. Good vs. Evil is the name. These are made out of styrofoam.
In this cage, the lock has been placed on the outside, so these people are kept here by force. But the artist wanted people to also think of the intangible ways (social constructs, etc) people are imprisoned in society and in their own lives.
These were quite different from other things Ju Ming created. I’m not even 100% sure these were done by him. They are definitely related to the Nationalist-Communist war because my Chinese-speaking friends said so.
What do you think?