In 2017 Per Jansson followed the shooting of a Taiwanese gangster movie and instead of following the story of the movie he focused on the different elements you will always find in a Taiwanese gangster movie. Such as, a funeral, a temple, an execution, and more. In doing so Per Jansson gives a glimpse into the life of a Chinese triad. His project lead to the publishing of the photo book 角頭 – Gatao. After the book Per Jansson also took studio portraits of Gatao brothers. The portraits can be found after this text.
GATAO is the pronunciation of the two Chinese characters 角 (GA) and 頭 (TAO), in the local Taiwanese language. The translation of the characters is GA=”Corner” TAO=”Head”, or, the boss on the street corner. In Taiwan, there will be many GATAO, and many GATAO in parallel are members of a triad. The different Gatao branches work independently of each other but do belong to a larger organisation, the triad.
In Taiwan, GATAO has also become the name of movies produced by a GATAO branch itself and many brothers participate in the movies.
The above book and the below studio portraits are showing on 13 November in Amsterdam during the open studios of Atelier WG.