Refractive Brain Therapy is an interactive animation-installation project that consists of digital metal prints on metal, some of them displayed in large water-filled vats, along with 3D animation & LCD monitors.
In this series I show a decidedly unique understanding of refractivity. The project touches on a natural phenomenon, and more importantly, a social one as well. In Chinese ideology, the phrase “refractivity” holds the dual meaning of
1) initiating an illusion,
2) leading towards social reality, with applications, treatments, such as water therapy that can be applied as psychological activity but also brain washing.
Additionally, the installation emphasizes social periods in China referring to “Cultural Revelation” and the “Great Leap Forward.” Physical body and reference is merged with social, political and cultural meaning. The “brains” are accompanied by 3D animations played on LCD monitors, while the faces bask in large water containers. The audience is encouraged to interact with the installation by observing changes within the objects through water level, light, animation, and refractions through the glass.
Tan has portrayed his inventive and autodidactic energy as an artist, teacher and researcher for three decades while residing in China, Canada, Singapore and the U.S. He is a co-director and Professor of Art at Rutgers University, Camden, U.S. He has served as a core board member of the Digital Art Committee and as a juror for the digital art gallery at SIGGRAPH. He was also one of the activists during the ’85 art trend of China. Since transferring to the field of digital art, he has pioneered the "Digital-Primitive” and “Digital Nature” concepts, which has won great acclaim and a number of awards from both American and international art scenes. He specializes in conceptual animation, animation installation and digital rigid-material prints through the use of 3D software. His artwork has been exhibited nationally and internationally in both solo and group shows, and has received numerous awards.