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Daniel Shieh
New York, NY



ARTIST STATEMENT: I create interactive performances and installations that encourage participants to understand each other beyond rigid identifications (masculine vs. feminine, native vs. foreign, authority vs. subordinate). My works usually involve two or more participants to activate. Once activated, they isolate parts of the participants’ bodies, such as the gaze or breath. Participants then present themselves to each other in a mediated manner, such as reflecting one’s gaze through mirrors or delivering one’s breath via an inflatable device.

The intimacy of mutual display and observation, in which participants become hyperconscious of their existence in each other’s minds, is enveloped with a strangeness created by the mediation. This strangeness destabilizes the meaning of social categories and the participants’ usual identifications of each other. By fostering intimacy in strangeness, I challenge ways of understanding each other that rely on compulsory identifications.

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  • Coexist
    2015
    Wood, steel, headphones, mirror, piezo sensor
    40 x 40 x 60”
    This interactive structure encourages participants to focus on the fundamental qualities of a human being; when two participants look through the rectangular opening together, the headphones allow eac

  • To See Beyond Our Appearances
    2015
    Steel, latex, nylon, paint
    112 x 38 x 84”
    This structure allows for a simple yet intimate interaction between two people. Participants interact with each other through a large latex sheet in the middle of the structure. Participants cannot se

  • To See Beyond Our Appearances
    2015
    Steel, latex, nylon, paint
    112 x 38 x 84”
    This structure allows for a simple yet intimate interaction between two people. Participants interact with each other through a large latex sheet in the middle of the structure. Participants cannot se

  • Conversation Tubes
    2016
    Steel, paint, cellphone circuit, solar charger
    20 x 10 x 80”
    There are three Conversation Tubes in three different parks. By pushing a button on the tube, people can call the other two parks at random and talk to residents whom they might otherwise not meet. Th

  • Breaths/Touching Slowly
    2019
    Wood frame, plastic tube, balloons, breaths
    Dimensions variable
    Breaths/Touching Slowly is an installation in two rooms; one room is a workspace, where pairs of visitors can create breath sculptures together, while the other room is an exhibition space to display

  • Breaths/Touching Slowly (installation view)
    2019
    Wood frame, plastic tube, balloons, breaths
    48 x 48 x 54”
    Breaths/Touching Slowly is an installation in two rooms; one room is a workspace, where pairs of visitors can create breath sculptures together, while the other room is an exhibition space to display

  • The Way You Look
    2019
    Steel, mirror, one-way mirror, glass, wood
    205 x 135 x 81"
    The Way You Look is a sculpture activated by two people, who can be strangers or acquaintances. The title alludes to the direction a person looks at, how a person looks like, and the way a person look

  • The Way You Look (detail)
    2019
    Steel, mirror, one-way mirror, glass, wood
    205 x 135 x 81"
    The Way You Look is a sculpture activated by two people, who can be strangers or acquaintances. The title alludes to the direction a person looks at, how a person looks like, and the way a person look
 








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