Shivering Wall Four-channel video installation, 06’30", 05’40", 06’30", 05’11" , 2011-2012

Tseng Yu Chin’s work has courted controversy with is focus on childhood innocence and the corruptive power of the adult gaze. In ‘Shivering Wall’, his protagonists are a little older, inhabiting the twilit world between childhood and maturity. Housed in a darkened room that reverberates with bass like club toilet, the image depicts a languid heap of teenaged bodies in a room strewn with the remains of a party. Small repetitive movements – a heaving chest, a body shifting for comfort, an absent-minded caress – give life to what might otherwise appear a static frieze. The weight of these motions, and the colours and intense sound – which suggests a world going about its business off-camera – create a heavy atmosphere. But the gestures between these young bodies are gentle. Is this a scene of squalid stupor and wasted potential, or is that the jaded old eye, once again staining the innocent? Perhaps these young bodies are just nestling warmly together through a period of cocooned inactivity. Maybe they don’t yet fit the world at large but will emerge when they are ready, into a world that they might better fit themselves into – or fit to their selves.

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