ABTG4: Kate Huang

Kate Huang, was born and raised in Taiwan. A self taught artist and a freelancer, she’s always loved drawing and painting since she was little, on papers, walls, or even the textbooks. She chose to put aside the drawing pens and stepped into the business world as she considered it to be the “secured path”. But the calling from true passion lead her back when she listened to her own voice.

Spring 2016

Huang loves painting, it is the time when she feels the most real, she acts truthfully, sees the world with better clarity and knows the ultimate truth that all things on both sides of the duality, are beauty. She seldom feels the need to make a statement through art, being an artist to her is like being a translator or a converter for the universal energy. She stretches wide to let passion and inspiration roar through. Paintings are done through her rather than by her. She believes in art, in it’s healing power, and it’s ability of reaching hearts. To touch a heart with a painting, the connection happens in an instant, in the most truthful and honest way.

In recent years when she paint, she structures the picture less and less before starting to paint. Now she just breathes and empties herself. She settles into her true state at the moment, then lets the moment transform into colors, texture, and shapes. She lets the flow lead the way to find it’s possibilities and grow organically. Every beginning of a painting is a new journey, and the destination always surprises her. To me this is the best thing that painting had taught her – there is always a good possibility wherever we are!

Kate Huang

Meet the Artist: Kate Huang

Artist Kate Huang sits next to the finished painting.

Artist Kate Huang sits next to the finished painting.

“So we’ve talked a little bit about the Red Room and what it means to you. Do you want to talk a little bit about the anniversary and the painting that you did?”

On the 6th Anniversary, I chose to be the artist that captured the event. The location that I chose [was] the second floor, the indoor space. When I was standing there I looked at the space and what was going on and I thought about what I wanted to paint.  So then I came up with this idea: Why don’t I capture the movement and also the energy of the space?

I decided to pick the elements, mostly the color and also do it in a random way, to put some texture on the canvas. I started with all white, created the texture, then I chose the colors of the space. Then I started to invite the audience throughout the day to participate in coloring the painting.

The first participants were kids. I put the color in the paint and showed them how to use the roller to put the color on. The kids were so excited! While I was preparing they kept coming over to say “Can I paint now?” As they were asking, I knew that that was the right decision to invite the audience to participate. When I was ready they lined up together and each of them did one corner. They were great—five years old, four years old, twelve years old—they can all do it. People are amazing when you give them a place to shine. They kids helped me do the base color. Then, in between the shows, I started putting on more details. In the afternoon, I started to invite adults.

A participant chooses colors before having their hand painted (Photo Credit to Julia Kao)

I wanted to capture the energy and the people, to leave not footprints but handprints. I think in our life, all the people and all the events that we encounter, we leave footprints in each other’s hearts. That footprint transforms us; it stays in us. It doesn’t matter if you encounter this person for one second, one minute or one hour, more or less all these people leave footprints and they transform us. So that day, I wanted people to put their handprints to remember that experience. We transformed each other in a way and we will always have each other.

That’s what Red Room is all about, connecting people and creating and sharing moments together. So, that’s my idea of this painting.

“Had you ever done anything like that before? I feel you’ve touched on this, but what did you learn from the experience, besides the idea that we’re all leaving our marks on one another? Are there any interesting stories you have from a particular person or a moment where you realized your perspective on art had changed just by doing this or was it more a culmination of your journey?

Yes, it is definitely a culmination of my journey because I had never done interactive art before. At the beginning, as an observer to myself, I really saw that you have to let go if you want to invite people to participate in something and co-create with you.  You really need to learn to let go and trust—that was the biggest lesson that day. I really wanted to do that but, in the beginning when the kids were doing it, there was a small voice in the back of my head asking “Is this okay?” Of course, I wondered if they’d go a little bit too left or too right and those voices were trying to control everything. Then, at the same time, I told myself that every time I heard that voice I would acknowledge it, smile and let go.

The more I trusted people the more I realized that there were so many times that day that people did it in a way that was beyond my expectation. After the kids took one corner, there were times that I really felt that what they did inspired me and, once they’d finished, I could paint more on the canvas. So, that moment, that learning moment lead me to allow people to do things of their free will and I actually gained more. I gained something from it too because they brought me inspiration.


What’s going to happen to the painting now?

Originally the idea was to sell it, but I just asked if Red Room would like to create the painting. It was created on the 6th anniversary and it was co-created by the people that were here together. I felt it meant more to keep it in Red Room than to sell it and I don’t see any price that could compare to the moment that we captured.

Red Room decided to keep the painting.

I actually participated in your painting and it was amazing. I thought it was so great that all of these people were gathering together and I saw people watching you. I feel like you opened a door for people to participate and feel they were part of something and part of the community.


Thank you so much for doing that and for making the audience feel more like a community member and not just an audience.

I thank Red Room and the people for being so open to that idea. I was a bit shy in the beginning as well because I didn’t know how people would feel about it, because they’d have to put paint on their hands and then wash them, but people were so supportive. So, to me, I felt like I was the one gaining a lot.

For years I worked on perfecting my skills in drawing in painting, but I think I got the largest emotional reaction from this painting. It made me laugh that I’d spent years trying to draw things I know and draw them in an exact way, but the painting I got the most compliments on is the one with no exact shape or figure.  It’s just purely fun, but people just love it the most. I think perhaps they love it because they participated in it; I think that’s a very important element.


What do you have to say to people who want to do interactive art like you did? You mentioned in the beginning that you were a little shy, you weren’t sure how it would be received and I feel people always feel that way about art and approaching other people. What would you say to those people who are on the verge of deciding whether to do

You mean they have an idea to pitch?

Yeah, or if you do this participatory art and ask people to get involved with an idea? How do you overcome that shyness? Was it just gaining confidence the more people said ‘yes’? How did you push yourself to put yourself in that position?

I started with people I know.  I think that’s also one of the reasons I went with kids, it’s easier. So, I think just make things easier for yourself. Go with the people you feel most comfortable with. Trust your intuition, because I think doing anything the same. We often try to plan things with our mind, but we shouldn’t ignore that very pure intuition in your heart. I think that’s the simplest guidance. Some people make you feel easy, trust that feeling and then start from there.

Artists Beat the Flood 2 overflows with creativity

Click here for the photo gallery for Artists Beat the Flood 2

ABTF 2 Review in Taipei Times

About Artists Beat the Flood 2

A first for many, a second for a few. Artists Beat the Flood took place at a summertime pace.

With 16 splashing visual artists, 5 harmonious music groups, and numerous generous partners, we were able to launch a wonderful event, and a unique experience where the Red Room hosted a live art and music event at Huashan Creative Park 華山文創區, a first for both the Red Room and Huashan.

Recognition is necessary for all of our supporting organisations and parties. Thank you to venue host Huashan and Emily Wang, coordinator for libLAB Studios. A special note to an individual who provided the essential supplies; Brendon Chen from Escape Artist contributed the canvases, attended, and participated in Artists Beat the Flood on July 5th with a glow of contagious positivity.

Treats and snacks by Granola House
Fresh ingredients for a freeflow salad bar by Dressed Taipei
Bottomless barrel of refreshments provided by 榕吧Rong Bar
Art Supplies by Escape Artist
Sponsorship and support by JB’s Diner
and our usual helping hands at Ripplemaker and Canmeng
And last but not least, thanks to all the volunteers from the Red Room community who helped make the day a success!

The silent auction took place all day as the artists worked their canvases. We are delighted to report that all paintings were sold by the end of the day! Red Roomers, we can proudly say that we have achieved our goal; this event has been a wonderful beginning to what we hope will be a series of live art & music events.

Julia Kao, Grace Lu, Jeremy Chen, Constance Woods, Carol Yao, Ping Chu were covering the event and posting regular updates on facebook. Thank you for your wonderful photos of the art, musicians and the space.


Stay tuned as the Dream Magician sets the scene for Stage Time & Juice this saturday, followed by a special visit by the Red Room Muse – Tina Ma.

Stage Time & Wine will commence soon after at 6:30pm.

Start the day with a bottle of juice or wine as we hope to see you this Saturday!

Kate Huang, ABTF 2

I’ve always loved drawing and painting, ever since I have memories, I was always drawing on the paper, the wall, or the textbook. I have once put aside the drawing pens and stepped onto the “safer path” to be a business woman, but the calling from true passion only got louder as time went by. Therefore 4 years ago, I said good bye to my 12 years career life and the old identity, started from ground 0 as a painter, a poet, an illustration artist, and a silver jewelry maker, set off for the unknown.

I love creating, it is the time when I feel the most real, I act truthfully, seeing the world with serene clarity and back to the ultimate truth that all things on both sides of the duality, are beauty. I hardily feel the need to use my art to make a statement, being an artist to me is like being a translator for the energy of the universe, a converter, a conduit, stretched wide to let passion and inspiration roar through, paintings are done through me, each piece is for someone unique out there. I believe in art, in it’s healing power. While creating, I am brave enough to steer the ship into the center of emotion and allow the body to be a vessel, to conduct it through limbs and vocal chords, and fingertips onto canvas, into music, and into dance. And I believe in it’s ability of reaching out to hearts, to touch a heart with a painting, the connection happens in an instant, in the most truthful and honest way.



Kate Huang, April 2012








On the busy street of Ximengding, there he was: an old man sitting on the side walk, his head resting on his knees, with 2 plastic bowls in front of him. Occasionally, people who walked by would toss some coins into the bowls. A beggar who didn’t care so much about begging, people didn’t really care about giving either.

2 days passed, any time I passed by, he was always sleeping. Morning, afternoon, or night.

One day, I happened to come out from the convenient store in front of him, there he was, sleeping still. I approached and tried place the coins in the bowls quietly so not to wake him. As the coins landed, he raised his head, face covered with mask, looked right into my eyes and said “thank you”- sincerely, and firmly. Then rest his head right back on his knees.

That moment I realized, he felt deeply ashamed…

The soul behind those eyes, something that was once respected, was hidden there. The old man kept it carefully, in the space between his forehead and his knees.

Regardless what state our life is at the current time, regardless how people see us, regardless how we view the others, if we are only willingly to go beyond our eyes and ears, see what’s not shown, listen to what’s unspoken, then we’ll see that true quality within each one of us, it is good, it is light.

Blogs: Chinese, English


Kate Huang, August 2011

This note was inspired by a text message from a good friend. The warmth of friendship and the inspiration started growing in my mind and one hour later, I wrote down this note. That’s one of the best things about friendship – one starts a spark, and together it becomes  fireworks!

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