莊周夢蝶（Zhuangzi dreamed he was a butterfly）
詹勳武 (Chan Hsun Wu)
An image creator and storyteller, Chan is fascinated in film and it was his original intention in creation. He is engaged in advertising shooting, screenwriting, documentary and music videos production. He was a video editor of Global Views Monthly, senior producer in CNEX Doc Channel. Currently he is in charge of video production for Active Music Art.
Most people spent their lives in the same city. A city also holds the passing of years for people who lived there. Soulangh Cultural Park used to be a sugar refinery and as time goes by, the sugar refinery has become an art village. It is like a dream, the past has faded into memory. Same as life, we once exist in this world and eventually we all demise. Just as the ancient philosopher Zhuangzi dreamed he was a butterfly, the concept of ilusion and reality are always intertwined. Life is like a dream.
The story of Zhuangzi Dreamed He was a Butterfly makes use of space and illogical scenery and presents a dream world. Between awakening and dreaming, it reveals the imagery that life is like a dream. The dead tree created previously by the artist Yi-ting Wang wishes to explore the life-death coexistence after death. The exhibition Zhuangzi Dreamed He Was a Butterfly maintains the tree and sets up a water pond to present the space. The water pond creates reflected imagery, allowing the audience to cross the water and observe his/her inner self. “A thousand streams with water flowing by reflect a thousand clones of the moon on high.” Which is the real moon, the one on the sky or the one upon the water? I wish the audience can contemplate the boundary between true and false through the reflection on the water.
As written in Zhuangzi’s Discussion of the Equality of Things: “Once Zhuang Zhou dreamed he was a butterfly, a fluttering butterfly. What fun he had, doing as he pleased! He did not know he was Zhou. Suddenly he woke up and found himself to be Zhou. He did not know whether Zhou had dreamed he was a butterfly or a butterfly had dreamed he was Zhou. Between Zhou and the butterfly, there must be some distinction. This is what is meant by the transformation of things”.
This passage is frequently quoted from Zhuangzi’s works, which vividly demonstrates his philosophical thoughts. It shows that Zhuangzi thinks humans cannot specifically differentiate reality from illusion, just as we mistakenly think the objects in images are real. Later generations continue to adopt this imagery to represent the concept of life being a dream.