First published: Fall 1997
Compared with European naive art and art brut, Taiwanese naive art has a fairly recent history; the first public display of work by a naive artist took place in the 60s. In the years which followed, with ever-growing economic prosperity and the rise of a popular political opposition movement, Taiwan echoed with demands for democracy. In cultural life there arose a desire to research the real origins of Taiwan and to expose those truly Taiwanese characteristics hitherto lost in the heart of the Chinese world.
With its genuine and lowly origins, evoking its roots in rural life, naive art or to give it the more embracing name outsider art found itself very much in tune with the social aspirations of its period, which led to its recognition and its development in the 80s.
Today exhibitions of the work of self-taught artists are frequently held in Taiwan and naive art has, in a certain sense, become the artistic dimension of research into Taiwan's cultural origins.
This is an article extract; read the full article in Raw Vision #20