2019-07-17 │ 採訪 / 攝影 陳儷云
[關於家的記憶藍圖－吻] 藍曬、油彩、綜合媒材、畫布 72.5×53cm 2018
Lin Tingli painted the Home, memory, blueprint during June and July in 2019 when he was a short-term resident in the Art Site of Railway Warehouse in Hsinchu.
Photography: sketching with light and shadows
While studying at the National Tsing Hua University’s Department of Arts, Lin got his inspiration for photographing from ordinary life, having discovered a film camera at home, thus beginning to scratch the surface of photography somewhat deeper.
“The difference between a film camera and a digital camera is the limitation to the roll-size and the choices from there of: the applicable aperture size and the shutter speed, the considerations that make one better recollect the captured frame of mind”. For Lin, photography is composing; creating a sketch from the captured scene of light and shadows.
“Having lived in Hsinchu for years, you can see how the city changes fast as the old houses go under and new arise. I witness these houses which the walls encapsulate: the vestiges of life for the people who once lived in them, and that makes me think about the place where I used to live as a child.” Because of what was happening to the city, Lin began to take walks with his camera in order to take portraits of the old rooms which were becoming evanescent. Whilst doing so, he also developed a liking for monuments by becoming aware of the Taiwanese culture preserved within the structures that made him recollect and preserve the confines of his own childhood room.
Axis of time revolves around the blueprints of memories
“I got the hang of the cyanotype technique just by photographing, simply because I like the kind of cold blue color which is weird and calm.” In addition to photographing, cyanotype technique is commonly used in building plans where the blueprint envisions the future, unlike in Lin’s case, where it depicts the past memories from the childhood years. A large-scale cyanotype collage is put together in order for this painting technique to combine the old and new images. Pictures from his childhood are often seen in his works, as are the pictures of decayed rooms which he has photographed as an adult. In his tangible works that surpass the worldly reality, the composition is coherent, yet the subject is fantastical. “The childhood pictures in the works each show me smiling happily. The young me co-exists with the old rooms, commemorating the past, but also anticipating the future.”
Born in Changhua County, Lin left home to study in middle school, and to him, the childhood spent together with his family became the most precious and intimate memory. The heaps of pictures taken by his parents testify of the family’s happiness. The year he turned eighteen, due to a sudden economic mishap, the whole family had no choice but to move out of the place they had resided in for years, and to start look for their future life from the apartment rental ads. Home became the most longed for and far-flung memory.
“Painting is a technique for fabricating time where as photographing is a way to capture it”. Similarly to the theme of Lin’s works, his creative medium also concerns time. The decaying past and the evanescent future appear as a timeline. Whether it is the evolution of culture, advances in technology or growing as a person, everything is based on what has happened, and as such, what is about to be gone is not yet fully gone, and what is about to happen has not yet fully happened. In Lin’s creations, the linearity of time is broken, and the past and the future come together in a point of immediate present.
[關於家的記憶藍圖－非請勿進] 建案工地象徵新生活即將開始，也隱喻過去已逝。藍曬、油彩、綜合媒材、畫布 72.5×91cm 2019
After entering the Art Site of Railway Warehouse´s artist residency in Hsinchu
According to Lin’s artist residency plan, “home represents my own space and also a place where memories are stored. People often arrange their houses, rooms, studios, etc., and even organize the environment near their homes so that they can feel their own existence in the process of restructuring the surroundings to their liking, and by doing so, the instantaneous nature of such movement begins to gradually identify the space as being a part of their home.”
From the university to the present time in Hsinchu, it has been more than seven years, and apart from his childhood home in Changhua, Hsinchu is the longest lasting stop-over city for Lin. The remaining memories, friends and living spaces in Hsinchu have made the city his home.
Ever since leaving home to study, Lin has always taken the train back. Now, having been in Hsinchu for seven years, the scenery along the Hsinchu railway line which goes to Changhua has come to remind him of returning to the safety and comfort of home. To him, Changhua and Hsinchu both are homes, and come the time for being seated and for the train to depart, both ways lead to home. The sound of the railroad track represents a certain kind of stability that is also one of the reasons Lin is in the Art Site of Railway Warehouse´s artist residency in Hsinchu. During the residency, Lin will use the cyanotype technique to record the scenery together with the old houses in Hsinchu before the urban renewal takes hold. It acts as a ceremonial glimpse from the past, and as a gaze into the future.
[關於家的記憶藍圖－太原第] 兒時家庭照片與新竹太原第拆除工地相互拼貼，在扭曲時間軸中交疊記憶。藍曬、油彩、綜合媒材、畫布 91.5×130cm 2018
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