Two heads, four hands, and three legs: Chang Chung-Jen and Chang Chung-I were the first conjoined twins to be surgically separated in Taiwan. Since then, they have been in the spotlight. In 2019, one of the brothers died. Che-Yu Hsu’s “副本人 (Single Copy)“ tells the story from the surviving twin’s point of view and wins the Videonale Award of the Fluentum Collection 2021, worth 5.000 euros. Tekla Aslanishvili received an honorable mention for “Scenes from Trial and Error”.

“Single Copy” contemplates the relationship between body and memory, reality and fantasy from the perspective of the brother Chang Chung-I. The autobiographical narration plays with the elements of copy and repetition: Chang Chung-I folding and unfolding a napkin, completing infinite loops in a three-wheeled scooter, or pacing back and forth between vintage buses. Che-Yu Hsu also elaborates on the technologies of physical and virtual reproduction and puts the age-old human desire to create perfect models into question. Chang’s stories alternate between reality and fantasy – always focusing on his missing leg, which he once shared with his twin brother.

The statement of the jury:

“The jury convened virtually on March 1st, 2021 to view the artworks in the exhibition and select the prize winner. While we did have the chance to explore the exhibition on a virtual tour, it was certainly not the same as coming together in Bonn to experience the works in their exhibition set-up. The circumstances of the pandemic thus increased our dependency on the viewing copy, which made it more difficult to assess installations but also renewed our sensitivity for single channel works in unexpected ways. The works in the exhibition conveyed a considerable spectrum of current video practices, including young newcomers as well as more established positions, and ranging across a multitude of genres and styles including documentary, narrative, experimental, mashup, and animation. Keeping with the spirit of Videonale, we were seeking to reward a young position that could convince us with an idiosyncratic approach to a new topic that they could truly make their own.

After an exciting deliberation stimulated by the high quality of the artistic propositions, we unanimously recognized Che-Yu Hsu as this year’s winner of the Videonale Award of the Fluentum Collection. His Single Copy from 2019 is an equally sensitive and rigorous recapitulation of the surgical separation of the Chang brothers, a set of Siamese twins born in Taiwan in the 1970s. The personal memory of the narrating twin Chang Chung-I is intricately interwoven with the collective memory of the heavily mediatized 1979 surgery that came to stand symbolically for the political relations of Taiwan and China at the time. The jury was impressed with the sensitivity for the physical body that is revealed through Chang’s personal memory but also through various layers of modeling from the silicone cast to the digital scan. While the script allows for elaborate reflections about the video camera as a prosthetic, the human body’s capacity for remembering, and many different readings of the ‘phantom limb’ phenomenon, Hsu does not force any of these interpretations. Instead, he convinced the jury with his effortless storytelling, careful composition, technical sophistication, and visual poignancy.”

Honorable mention

Furthermore, the jury awarded an honorable mention to Tekla Aslanishvili’s "Scenes from Trial and Error". In her work, Aslanishvili searches for traces of the failed billion-dollar projects Lazika and Anaklia City on the Georgian coast. Using documentary techniques, Ashlanishvili shows the material and social consequences of the many years of attempts to build a futuristic port city.


The jury consisted of: Prof. Dr. Stephan Berg (director of the Kunstmuseum Bonn) Fatima Hellberg (director of the Bonner Kunstverein), Matthieu Lelièvre (art historian, independent curator and consultant at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Lyon) and Dr. Linnea Semmerling (director of the Düsseldorf Inter Media Art Institute)


For the 18th time, the VIDEONALE Bonn presents current video art works from its international competition at the Kunstmuseum Bonn. 31 artistic positions illuminate under the thematic focus FLUID STATES. SOLID MATTER, how we as individuals are in constant exchange and interaction with other people, living beings and our environment, and ask what challenges we currently have to face here for a future coexistence. The exhibition will take place from March 4 to April 18, 2021.

Until March 7, 11.59pm all works can also be viewed on the streaming platform of Videonale:

Artists in the exhibition of the VIDEONALE.18:

Paula Ábalos, Tekla Aslanishvili, Eliane Esther Bots, Viktor Brim, Adam Castle, Eli Cortiñas, Mouaad el Salem, Mahdi Fleifel, Ellie Ga, Beatrice Gibson, Russel Hlongwane, Heidrun Holzfeind, Che-Yu Hsu, Sohrab Hura, Ida Kammerloch, Michelle-Marie Letelier, Dana Levy, Anne Linke, Lukas Marxt & Michael Petri, Bjørn Melhus, Ana María Millán, Michael Klein & Sasha Pirker, Morgan Quaintance, Úna Quigley, Aykan Safoğlu, P. Staff, Rhea Storr, Emily Vey Duke & Cooper Battersby, Ingel Vaikla, Ana Vaz, Gernot Wieland

Fluentum Collection

Based in Berlin, the Fluentum Collection is a private collection of time-based art, which has also co-produced artistic works for a number of years. This is the third time that the collection has sponsored the Videonale Award, which aims to support the winning artist in producing new works.

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