偏航 · 探痙
"Off Course" is the first art work created by Hai-Ru Tsai about herself being daughter of a political victim. In the video, the artist uses a headless wax figure mold to represent her father who suffered as a political dissident. The mold was used to create some of the wax statues in the gallery of the New Life Correction Center in the Green Island White Terror Memorial Park. After cleaning up the used mold, the artist takes the symbolic father on the road to his prison. It might just be a vain attempt of the artist to "take the father back." Nevertheless, the cleaning action has multiple subtle ambiguous implications. Cleaning as an action implies supposed "uncleanness," which could be a result of, as the artist said, "cleaning an old body" or a subconscious abjection response. It can be an abjection response of the system and the order to a disturbance or a set of rules to a violation, for example when the state ideology was challenged by a political dissident. It can also be the artist's abjection response to the deep childhood fear of being a prisoner's daughter. The (re)visiting of the father's footsteps allows the artist to reconcile with her inner fear and repression, and at the same time, reconstruct the subjectivity of her father's "discarded" life.