Feb 01, 2022
5 mins read
just minutes ago from starting this new entry post i was on my own downstairs, unwinding after the day full with a pleasant luncheon and tea with my taiwan blood family over lunar new year's eve. when i exited the elevator i noticed the water from the water dispenser was running on its own, a little ominously in the dark (a daily mechanical maintenance, some kind of cleaning detox perhaps). during my smoke outside the building the running had stopped. finished. and i was able to fill up my bottle, the water warm in my throat, soothing and quite different from the cold night drizzle outside. i considered this brief encounter telling or a premonition of something im not yet privy to. some kind of overflowing to come? cleansing? or a reminder of up-keeping.
the elevator of the building im living in for now
i start my february alone, graciously provided by yipeng in his abode in taichung as he spends his lunar new year with his family. i say graciously because i realised my past few months beginning my new life in taiwan (save the 14-day quarantine in september 2021) was lived with people and stimuli constantly around me, demanding my attention whether by choice or otherwise. while living in the shared studio in school thrust me entirely into a new environment to learn trial by fire how to exist in it (the only way i know how), it also meant i had no real physical and emotional separation from my outward and inner life. i remember in january i was mulling over newfound friends and connection paused because of festivities and rethinking my place and loneliness in a foreign community and feeling displaced, even a little lost. now i am appreciating and enjoying the complete privacy to be alone. i had needed this time to reflect.
the year has barely started and i find that i have projects already filling up my time in the to come. almost a thing every month. next week yipeng and i begin to put up our exhibition, all the while my new semester (second) begins. we are also working on a project to do a workshop with university students in kaohsiung, eventually presenting some public art on the beach. it seems like a good thing, to be busy, and have opportunities that i am interested in, or to have a platform to present my own work and ideas. it is almost like my body (and mind heart soul etc) knows and has found itself in a space both physical and emotional that is conducive for rest, a chamber to re-centre myself, a brief reprieve before i start going again. maybe its because im in a country that follows the lunar calendar that i find myself following the wider societal emotional currents of deep cleaning deep reflection of the past year, summarising ourselves and presenting ourselves to our family and friends, readying ourselves for a new year.
the beautiful beach at kaohsiung that i encountered with friends
it does feel like its a significant moment in history what with covid stabilising into a common flu after two years. then it also feels significant for me personally now. i am reaping the benefits and work (or non-work) from almost exactly two years ago when i decided to move here. where i am now is its consequence. the help and care from people i have met then, here, now. also in january i had two separate online meetings for two separate projects both of which had someone recognise me from my time doing my residency at islands from july 2020. so it feels very significant and even right that i am here now in this moment in my life and i know no other way. and even though i write this there is that slight nagging small questioning doubt thats asking what if this is not significant, what if all that im feeling and intuiting isnt necessarily "right" and the results of the decisions ive made are just what the chaos of the world has thrown at me? the entropy? what if im making it all up? maybe it doesnt matter? i dont quite know certainly. but i can guess that we all need our own illusions motivations truths to carry on anyway. it must be good to want to carry on anyway.
it is my third day here and i have already had such a journey. already in the past week i came to a few important insights through communicating with people i trusted and through timely information either through surfing youtube or through some wikipedia dive. a deep understanding about why i push people away or why i want to give of myself, realising the recurrent troubles and relationships that i have, why i do what i do. i feel that i am being tested. on how i know myself, what i know of myself, how i think i want my relationships to be, what kind of connections i want, how i want to connect to others near and far and what i want my work to be about, what is my work about, etc, what i want my creative output to be like/ my "career" as an "artist" whatever the fuck that is. my own sexuality and gender performance. my metaphysics. my philosophies. my beliefs. rethinking my relationship with astrology. my spirit with all. and more importantly the work that im to do in my given temporal lifetime and its lot. very big uneasy questions/questioning. its like all ive learnt in the past early 20s (all the examination and organisation of my reflection of my earlier life) im now having to reexamine check confirm if thats really me and what i want. of course i change and people change and i want to allow that change however difficult uncomfortable it may be but now here it is what i am. there is still so much for me to learn about myself and the world. and so much to tinker and relearn. perhaps its the saturn return. perhaps im just getting older. perhaps im still growing. or at least im still growing. thank you for witnessing it all.
a quote printed on a shirt in carrefour that i saw weeks ago and still think about