廖祈羽
Liao Chi-Yu
簡歷年表 Biography
個展自述 Statement
相關評論 Other Criticism
相關專文 Essays
網站連結 link


Picnic
中文
text by Liao Chi-Yu

To Zeus, humans were fragile, afraid, irrational, and hopeless.
Prometheus stole fire from Zeus and gave it to humans.
He let them learn how to keep warm and cook.
When people touched the fire and got the secret power,
miserable, yet exciting stories started.

It may be when the first tool was made out of a flint,
men were inspired, watching the flint sparking.

Life changed completely since then.

We started to move
from caves to plains.
We built shelters.
People spent more and more time under a roof.
So, the body started longing for activities in the sun.

That was a winding trail.
Because the forest was tall and dense,
the whole trail was dark and shadowy.
I followed the sun light in the distance
and came to a grassland. She was in the cove.
With the sun shining, the scene seemed not real at all.
A bunch of people picnicked here, men and women, full of colors.

The scientists said, by eating cooked vegetarian food,
people can expand their brain capacity.

I was so afraid of the school food when I was little.
The kitchen’s aunties did not know how to cook at all.
The food texture and flavor were always blended.
For example, ingredients in a salty congee were like a mash.
“I did not know what I was eating.”
That’s the most horrible eating experience, indeed.
For most of the snack time,
all I did was fooling around in the campus,
because the food was totally not my cup of tea.
Sometimes, merchandized puddings or jellies were served.
My buddies would bring some out for me to eat.
I sat in the shade of trees by the track field,
enjoying the rare goodies.
It could be chilled yogurt drinks or flavored juice.
I imagined I was having a wonderful picnic.
In the shade, I was like an opportunist,
avoiding and anticipating something every day.

Cookies are a common in picnics.
From the western culture,
cookie, the word can be traced back to the mid-16th century.
Initially, religious houses gave toast to the poor or the pilgrims.
for them to carry along.
Then, they had flatbread grilled on both sides.
It was as hard as a rock, easy to preserve.
It was said where the cookies came from.
The flatbread was also a daily staple for sailors and soldiers.
They could not go on duty without it.

Butter symbolized richness and prosperity.
In early days, sharing butter with the guests
showed the host’s hospitality.
When we wanted to get close to someone,
it always worked by sharing foods together.
In my childhood, I always had friends,
similar to myself.
They were like a mirror for me to see myself.
On outings, we brought favorite foods for each other.
After finishing the school, as time passed,
we did not get to meet again somehow.

Memory is a weird thing. For example, we may remember the voice of a old playmate;
but do not remember the voice of our own.

I talked about this with friends.
Most people barely remember anything before the age of three.
Also, most of our memory is segmental.
I am not quite good at remembering recent happenings.
But, things in the past stay clearly in my mind.
In my memory database,
I could still clearly see myself hugged by Mom,
head up, seeing the necklace on Mom’s chest.
The necklace was not glamorous at all.
But it looked exquisite in particular, attaching to the skin.

Looking back, it should be a memory of my babyhood.
Maybe, I wanted to keep those remote images in mind to prove that
I was gifted and different.
It seemed, at some moments,
you could come out from a picture to watch yourself with others from a distance.
Those were images you just could not forget.

Afterwards, I learned from books about memory and dreams.
For those remote memory,
what you remembered might not be real. It’s a mixture of memory and imagination.
We couldn’t tell what was real and what had been made up out of complex psychological
factors.

In our dreams, we shared good foods with people we missed.
It would be even better if we dined in a beautiful place, in a breeze,
enjoying the intimate moments in dreams.

Sometimes, the setting in a dream did not necessarily match the place in reality.
For example, Grandma’ home in the dream was totally different from that in reality.

You might do the same thing at the same place with various people.
Memory likes to rerun certain episodes in particular.

My family was having a picnic by a creek.
Dad and Mom were having fun that was too good to be true.
When they had a row in real life,
I could not help thinking of their good time in outings.
Later, in other field trip,
we went to the same creek.
I remembered once again our good time in the past, while bothered by trifles of reality.

Was that a dream, our memory,
or things actually happening?

We often get to confirm our memory with photos,
bringing back things of little significance.
Images provide information, then,
imagination enriches our memory.

I could not help thinking negatively.
When I was thrilled, I’d say it’s like a dream.
When I sorrowed, I wish it were just a dream.
Reality was too tough to handle in either case.

The man prayed to God.
He would like to see again his beloved wife who’d died.
He was so sincere that
was heard by the god in charge of dreams.
God told the man, he could let the man reunite with his wife in a dream,
on the condition that the man could not come back to the real world ever.

The man was thrilled.
He thought: it would be a blessing to stay in a good dream forever.
He said yes.
In the beginning, the man was very happy.

But, day after day, the man became bored with the same love.
So, he prayed to God again,
hoping he could wake up and return to the real world.

God told him,
you had stayed in the dream for a long time, longer than you could imagine. Your body had perished.
You could go back to nowhere.

Now the man realized,
when he was freed from the reality, he also lost his realm of dreams.
 
 
Copyright © IT PARK 2022. All rights reserved. Address: 41, 2fl YiTong St. TAIPEI, Taiwan Postal Code: 10486 Tel: 886-2-25077243 Fax: 886-2-2507-1149
Art Director / Chen Hui-Chiao Programer / Kej Jang, Boggy Jang