Robotic Love 2013
"During my residency at Youkobo, I explored the unusual means of making art using toy robots. These little "machines" inform the creative process by replacing the personal touch or signature stroke with a mechanical means. The result is a collaboration between the toy robots and me. I also collaborated with my former graphic design classmate from LASALLE College of the Arts (1999–2001), Kunihiro Masuko, and his technician Yoshimi Yomogida, who has more than 30 years of experience in offset printing. Kunihiro Masuko recently took over his father's print shop and has a printing machine that can print up to A3 size and 1 colour and that is good for short print-runs. The process of offset printing is often very precise and perfect. Yet in this collaboration with Mr. Yomogida, we broke almost very rule in the tradition. First, the oil-based ink is mixed directly in the roller. Then, the "ghost" image, which results from insufficient ink, is printed onto the works. Each print is turned and printed up to three times, giving it a layered effect. The results of the 500 prints are very spontaneous, and their colours slightly varied, so no two prints are totally identical.
The process of creating the final wall installation started with collecting the marks from the toy robots using sumi ink on a roll of paper. Digital photographs of the most interesting marks were taken, then layered to form new compositions using the image editing software Adobe Photoshop. A film and plate of the final 30cm-by-30cm composition were cast and printed using the traditional offset printer model, Heidelberg Printmaster QM. 40 prints were chosen out of the total of 500 prints in this installation in Youkobo Art Space. The decision to create a square composition is inspired by the concept of tiling, using one single pattern to create a large visual. As an abstract painter, I have chosen to form the pattern after my paintings, which are asymmetrical and random. Each installation is site-specific. " Shih Yun