Line of Vision: Photography of Wang Hsin

Taipei Fine Arts Museum is less than a dollar (30 NT) and it's one of my favorite places in Taiwan. During my first visit to the museum, in 2011, there was an exhibition celebrating 100 years of Taiwan.

Wang Hsin was born in Lugang (1941) and grew up in Taichung before moving to Tokyo, where she first studied animal breeding before becoming a documentary photographer. 

Wang today is in her 70s. Reflecting on her career in advance of this exhibition, she wrote that photography's value "lies in its ability to document and report," and "whether or not it qualifies as personal art means little," and that she has "never been willing to reduce photography to some personal form of expression," all of which is interesting because the curator wrote that, "for [Wang] the camera is not merely a documentary device, but a tool of expression." LOL.

Wang's focus was to photography indigenous peoples, documenting people and places before they disappeared. Most of the work displayed was from the 1970s and 1980s, mostly black and white, and mostly from Taiwan but some from India, Nepal, Kashmir, and Tibet too. 

Wang Hsin. I think this is from Orchid Island.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin.

Wang Hsin. This looks like it could be New England or Mid-Atlantic America or maybe the Pacific Northwest. I think it might actually be somewhere in Japan. I can't remember.

Wang Hsin. I think this is from Tibet.