Performing groups in the form of cabarets, song and dance ensembles, recreational bands, or even in the name of entertainment companies, are mobile performing troupes endemic to Taiwan, where their customer base and show content are inextricably interlinked. They have been around since the 1970s, with song and dance performances as their principal act, and have made regular appearances in all sorts of occasions—from weddings, funerals to festivities. Stage trucks, the subject of this photo series, are mobile “carriers” exploited by the said performing groups still active and widespread in Taiwan’s plebeian society, molding the collective memory of the Taiwanese people.

STAGE is a compilation of photographs that Shen Chao-Liang has collected over the past six years. He says: it is my aspiration to convey this unique Taiwanese industry and the abundant cultural messages it exudes with its dazzling totems and soaring ideas, eliciting people’s imaginations and connections to the culture of this peculiar entertainment business, which transcends time and space, bonds the horizontal and vertical, and links the planar and three-dimensional. Through the STAGE series, I also wish to approach Taiwan’s contemporary social and cultural landscape from a more traditional and direct style of visual description, fusing modern vocabulary to invite viewers to examine the potential turning points and awareness derived from the development.

Shen Chao-Liang is represented by Aki Gallery