In Trance We Gaze

2018, single-channel video, 25′

In Trance We Gaze investigates the path toward uprootedness as well as loss of land and interpersonal connection due to constant discipline and incorporation, rituals, faiths, bodies, and circumstances of humanity and divinity. Time is divided into more subtle segments. Links that fail to catch up and forsaken are manifested within the gaze of a stopped frame. Be that humanity or divinity, all destruction and resurrection meet herein in search of a safe corner to reside.


This film is part of “Reel Taiwan” series, a collaboration program between Taiwan Film Institute and Public Television Service. The archive videos collected by Taiwan Film Institute are adopted for the production. CHEN selected over 30 footages concerning “rituals and faiths”, “modernized processes of body discipline”, “circumstances of men”, etc. from over 5,000 news in the archive of Taiwan Film Institute from 1945 to 1985. These footages are edited together with images of rituals, faiths, edges, bodies, and human circumstances that she has concerned herself with for a long time in an attempt to draw the two different images closer to each other to find the gaps for a discourse between the two. Amidst childhood memories and dreams related to death, CHEN searches the primitive, warm values and energy of faith in the ancient rituals while gazing at the nature of life in trance.

CHEN Singing

Taiwan / 1974 born in Taipei, now living and working in Taipei

As a video worker, Chen Singing produces works ranging from feature films to documentaries. She stresses on the circumstances of human existence and faith so as to probe into the nature of life. The artist often highlights the absurdity and structural issues in the real world via fantastic realist approach. She excels at delicate narrative of sensibility that fuses sounds, music, and images deftly to produce a distinctive image language to deposit her meticulous observation and sense of poetry.

All images courtesy of Chen Singing and The Walkers Film.

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