Rain’s iron sculptures – ‘Dissociated from all semblance so there is being not representation’
By CHEN Ting-Shih
Marcel Duchamp, the pioneer of Modern Art in the 20th Century, presented an artwork entitled ‘Fountain’ made of a found object – ceramic urinal – in 1917. Duchamp subverted the essential visual element since Impressionism, and ‘Ready Made’ soon became one of important creative elements in Modern Art. Creating artworks with items generated by people, from industrial wastes to daily necessities, is to gather poetic sentimentality in our everyday life.
The crucial significance of the combination and creation of ‘Ready Made’ is that the material marks and represents an actual, fragmental and still actuality of people’s life. The traces stay on the surface just like fossils in stones.
The sculptural master of neorealism Cesar, Arman and I all have antiquities devotion. We are full of interested in daily objects and love the affection and beauty of the assortment of styles. Therefore we are collectors of all sorts of mixture from components of abandoned ship to pieces of antique, which become a part of our works. You may find an unexpected attraction that is natural and no pretentious and cannot be generated by artificial touches. The creation of ‘Ready Made’ must depending on the artist’s superior observation, thoughts and artistic practice in order to accomplish a humour, defective, ridiculous, derisible or elegant art piece.
TSAI Chih-hsien (Rain) has been creating ‘Ready Made’ iron sculpture for years. There is a strong and enthusiastic heart hidden inside his quiet and tender look. He singles out deferential wastes or components of unknown machines and brings care and attention to these raw materials and then transforms them to a new look and gives them a new life.
There are two obvious characteristics of Rain’s iron sculptures: firstly, he welds and cut iron by himself, hence his works are substantial and pure, just like him. There are no extra colour, no nonsense or additional interaction. The conjunctions are smooth, and configuration is simple and candid. Secondly, I believe that Rain is a sentimental yet not dramatic, rational yet not stubborn, silent yet pleasant person, and his works convey a delicate, strong and spatially musical sensation that contents a humble and persistence essence.
Rain’s practice with disposed iron is not developed from certain imagination but created from a variety of ‘Ready Made’. He must not have presumed image in his mind in order to present unexpected figure. He must distance from all assumptions so landscape, nature or manufactures can be the material of his creation. It is the meaning of the saying ‘Dissociated from all semblance so there is being not representation’.
It is glad to know that TSAI Chih-hsien is going to have a solo exhibition at American Institute in Taiwan, and I write this article to congratulate him also as a preface of the show. 
 Editor’s note: This article was written for TSAI Chih-hsien solo exhibition in 1998.
1958 born in Chia-yi
2013 2013 Tsai Chih-hsien Photography Solo Exhibition, 691. Sharing Community, Changhua.
2013 ‘Along’, 107 Gallery, Taichung.
2012 ‘This Kind’ Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, 102ART Contemporary Gallery, Tainan.
2012 ‘Poem in Fall’ Iron×Tsai Chih-hsien, 691. Sharing Community, Changhua.
2012 2012 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Pemalamo Gallery, Taipei.
2012 ‘The Poetry of Iron’, Weeds and Wood, Chia-yi.
2011 ‘Not Able’Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Ile Gallery, Taichung.
2010 2010 ‘That Is’ Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Pemalamo Gallery, Taipei.
2010 2010 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, 107 Gallery, Taichung.
2009 2009 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, 107 Gallery, Taichung.
2008 ‘Intensively’Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, 107 Gallery, Taichung.
2007 2007 Surgar Industry Cultural Park Sculpture Biennale, Sugar Industry Cultural Park, Kaohsiung.
2006 2006 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Ke-Yuan Gallery, Taichung.
2006 ‘Me and not’ Tsai Chih-hsien Photography and Sulpture Solo Exhibition, 107 Gallery, Taichung.
2005 2005 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Ke-Yuan Gallery, Taichung.
2005 2005 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Moon Gallery, Taichung.
2005 ‘Dialogue: Sculpture vs Architect’, Modern Art Gallery, Taichung.
2005 Miniature Sculpture Exhibition, Celebrated Art Gallery, Kaochiung.
2004 2004 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Ke-Yuan Gallery, Taichung.
2003 2003 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Gugui, Yingge.
2002 2002 ‘Iron Ink’Double Solo Exhibition, Ke-Yuan Gallery, Taichung.
2002 2002 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Moon Gallery, Taichung.
2001 2001 Tsai Chih-hsien Solo Exhibition, Restore the barns, Sanyi.
EXHIBITIONS AT CRANE GALLERY