M+ presents a new digital commission Puzzle by artist Ryan Kuo 


25th October 2022 – (Hong Kong) M+, Asia’s first global museum of contemporary visual culture in the West Kowloon Cultural District in Hong Kong, announces a brand-new commissioned digital artwork, Puzzle (https://taroface.github.io/puzzle/), by artist Ryan Kuo. Puzzle is the fifth work in M+’s digital commission series, co-curated with Kerry Doran, the external advisor for the series of M+ web digital commissions.

Inspired by role-playing video games, Ryan Kuo’s Puzzle rebuilds conversations from his personal history as a first-generation immigrant growing up in rural America. In looping, disembodied encounters, themes of Confucian patriarchy and filial piety encounter American idealism and self-preservation. Instead of viewing these as opposing forces, Kuo attempts to piece them together across the barriers of memory and language.

In the work, as questions and confusion accumulate in dialogue boxes, graphical tiles reassembling fragments of places that Kuo once inhabited or imagined build up in layers of love, restlessness, nostalgia, and speculation. Traveling backwards and forwards in time but never repeating itself, the programme generates new sequences of conversations and compositions upon each visit. The instability of the experience—the terse, bilingual dialogues, sprawling maps and structures—reflect the difficulty of retracing the steps that bring us to the present moment. In a provocative gesture, there is no play in the game. Instead, through amnesiac loops that reiterate frozen values and attempt to say what cannot be said, the artist outlines identities and societies stranded in the past, resulting in a turbulent present to insinuate an unknown yet deterministic future.