Starting from a gunman involved in a murder case, I seek to reflect the collective unconscious within society and politics through the gunman’s multiple peculiar roles—a filmmaker, a killer, a gangster, and a patriot.
In 1984, when Taiwan was still under Martial Law, a Taiwanese American writer Henry Liu was shot to death in his own house in the US by a Taiwanese assassin. Afterward, due to the intervention and investigation of the US government authorities, this case was eventually confirmed to be a political murder jointly committed by the Military Intelligence Bureau and the biggest mafia United Bamboo Gang in Taiwan, as the government paid the mafia to kill Henry Liu. In the end, the Taiwanese government negotiated with Henry Liu’s family, who signed a non-disclosure agreement, part of which prohibited the revelation of the case in the form of cinema.
The protagonist of this work, Wu Dun, is the assassin who fired the shot at the time. After the case was exposed, the Taiwanese authorities were pressured by the US, and Wu Dun was thus sentenced to life imprisonment. However, he was given amnesty and discharged from prison after six years. After he got out of prison, Wu Dun remained an important member of the United Bamboo Gang, and he established a film company as a producer with the support of his mafia influence, making several “wuxia films” – refers to specific traditional Chinese swordplay films. In the genre of “wuxia film,” the story of the conflicts between a government and local gangsters has often been the main theme, along with a strongly nationalistic ideology. In this work, I revisited the film studio that was once used by Wu Dun and is now deserted to recompose the fragments of the political assassination and the scenes of wuxia films, and I cooperated with a 3D scanning team—their job is to provide forensic scanning service at crime scenes—to make a digital double of Wu Dun.
Produced by Le Fresnoy – Studio national des arts contemporains