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Old Residential Buildings Transformed into Art Spaces

The Taipei Contemporary Art Center has brought a new and artistic breath of fresh air to old  residential buildings.A dedicated team of individuals from the world of contemporary art—curators, artists, critics, cultural workers—has come together and pooled time and talent to create the new Taipei Contemporary Art Center. In turn, senior talent among the local world of photographers has come together to create the Taiwan Photography Museum Preparatory Office. The two new cultural pearls were officially opened for public visit in February and March, 2010, respectively. They are both housed in renovated spaces within old four-storey residential buildings located The Taiwan Photography Museum Preparatory Office has over 200 photographic works of art on display, attracting many foreign visitors.by Taipei Hero House and stretch of Yanping S. Rd. In the past the buildings and the bustling Ximending commercial district, which is one block away, were of sharp contrast. The owner of the facilities, the JUT Foundation for Arts and Architecture , has made these spots available for use as art spaces where artists can gather for the stimulating exchange of ideas.


Informal Arts Publication and Propagation Spaces
When you walk into the Taipei Contemporary Art Center you are met with a striking sight. Before you are three red styrofoam installation pieces big as boulders and a collection of green primary school seats. This is a comfy, stylish café where artists can gather. The other half of the first floor is taken up with open-plan offices open to public visit where information materials on and by Taiwan's artists, curators, and critics are collected. These include commentaries and publications. Anyone researching the contemporary arts in Taiwan is welcome to use the materials. The center offers thorough introduction to the artists. The office is also available as a space for up-and-coming artists to use for introductory interviews and public announcements on their works.

The second level provides a space for local and international artists from around the world to give irregular presentations of free-flowing form, designed for interchange and announcement of works. The third and fourth levels together constitute formal exhibition space. Come on over during any afternoon, watch the random interplay of light and shadow inside this charming old apartment building given a new lease on life, and revel in the new air of artistic interplay. Among the various regular activities you can experiment with is the “Youth Artist Salon” held one Sunday each month, the “Friday Bar” held every Friday night, and the “Cultural Policy Forum”.

Outpost for the Taiwan Photography Museum
The other facility making an old residential building its home, the Taiwan Photography Museum Preparatory Office, has been given life by a corps of the senior statesmen of Taiwan photography led by celebrated photographer Zhuang Ling. Taiwan has never had a place for education in photography or a space for discussion among still-image creators, and so Zhuang and friends have first set up the Preparatory Office to promote works by deserving photography talents, for exhibits, for related forums and discussions, and for instruction. There is also a reading room and other facilities provided.

The current total space of the facility is limited, but the point in opening the Preparatory Office is to demonstrate the unity and enthusiasm for the project on the part of the nation's photographers. The walls on the first and second levels are covered in photographs of all sizes, more than 200 in all. These include masterpieces generously provided by the elder statesmen of the local photography community. Right since the opening of the vanguard office a steady stream of local and foreign admirers of photographic art have come in, creating a taste for the completed museum down the road. The first formal exhibit being held is entitled “2010 Photography Battle Array”, a collection of superlative images capturing the essence of the authentic local culture and free of any categorization according to school, genre, or professional/amateur.

Taipei Contemporary Art Center

Exhibition hours Thurs-Sun 13:00-19:00 (businessaffairs hours Tues-Sat 11:00-19:00, closed Mon); free entry
Add: 160-6, Yanping S. Rd.
Tel: (02) 2311-2626
Website: www.tcac.tw

Taiwan Photography Museum Preparatory Office

Hours: Tues-Sun 11:00-18:00 (closed Mon); free entry
Add: 1F, 17, Lane 91, Sec. 1, Zhonghua Rd. (MRT Xiaonanmen Station)
Tel: (02) 2388-9693