fulbright Taiwan online journal

fulbright Taiwan online journal

Author: Jennifer Huang 黃謙恕

Jennifer Huang 黃謙恕
Jennifer Chen-su Huang is an artist, writer, and object-maker based in Chicago, IL. In 2017-17, she was researching indigenous Atayal weaving in Taiwan. She holds a M.F.A. in Fiber and Material Studies from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a B.A. in Art Practice with a minor in Art History from University of California, Berkeley.  

A Year of Weaving in Taiwan

     It is astonishing to me how quickly these nine months have gone by in Taiwan. This semester in the remote hills of Tainan, where I am a Visiting Artist at Tainan National University of the Arts, my spring has been more introspective, and I am recoiling inwards to access how to best create a work of art in response to my research of indigenous Atayal weaving in the fall, when I was hosted by the Ethnology department at National Chengchi University in Taipei. I have been fearful of being unable to adequately respect and promote the revered weaving process that I have learned. Not being Atayal, I have been afraid of appropriating their patterns to tell a story that was not mine to tell.      I had reservations about researching Atayal culture, since “the term ‘research’ is inextricably linked to imperialism and colonialism. The word itself, ‘research,’ is probably one of the dirtiest words in the indigenous world’s vocabulary,” as Maori anthropologist, Linda Tuhiwai Smith writes in Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples. I have witnessed this skepticism in the Atayal community that I was working with, and I recognize the validity of their concerns. I knew

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Research & Reflections

fulbright taiwan online journal