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Portraits showcase Taiwan's diversity at Avignon arts village in France

07/06/2024 10:49 AM
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CNA photo July 5, 2024
CNA photo July 5, 2024

Avignon, July 5 (CNA) Three hundred portraits of Taiwanese people cover the walls at the Off Avignon Arts Festival in France, showcasing diversity in Taiwan.

The display, for which the Taiwanese consulting firm Plan b participated in French artist JR's Inside Out project, features photographs of ordinary people of various ethnicities, genders and ages from across Taiwan.

"Seeing these diverse faces during the photoshoots was truly touching, and it made me feel proud of Taiwan," Plan b CEO Emily Chen (陳韻竹) told CNA.

"By conveying the everyday appearance of Taiwanese people, we show that the characteristics of freedom, democracy, equality and diversity allow our culture to be inclusive and live happily."

The project features the work of three photographers from diverse backgrounds: Ivy Chen (陳沛緹), who was born in Japan and raised in Taipei; Ricor (李廣), of Hakka heritage from Miaoli; and Chong Kok Yew (張國耀), an ethnically Chinese Malaysian who has lived in Taiwan for more than 10 years.

CNA photo July 5, 2024
CNA photo July 5, 2024

In nearly every black-and-white portrait that comprise the extensive work, the picture's subject is looking into the camera lens with a relaxed and friendly expression. Many of the photographed individuals are smiling, while others are eating.

The 300 large portraits, pasted next to each other on the walls of the arts village, gaze down upon the exhibit's spectators.

The result is a warm and delightful celebration of Taiwan's rich humanity.

Valentin Crépain, an Inside Out Photobooth manager, believes the project sends a "powerful message" about inclusivity.

"In the Inside Out project, everyone presents themselves as they wish, allowing participants to shine," he said.

The global collaborative art project Inside Out Project was launched in 2011 by French artist JR, who was named by TIME magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of 2018.

Variations of the work have been created and exhibited in over 150 countries.

The Off Avignon Arts Festival runs annually alongside the main Avignon Festival, serving as a platform for both emerging and established artists. This year, the festival runs from July 3 to July 21.

(By Judy Tseng and Evelyn Yang)


CNA photo July 5, 2024
CNA photo July 5, 2024
CNA photo July 5, 2024
CNA photo July 5, 2024
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