While receiving the Kagawa Prefecture Shodoshima Town Delegate led by Chief Representative Hisao Moriguchi in the afternoon of September 20th 2016 at the Taoyuan City Hall, Taoyuan City Mayor Cheng Wen-Tsan expressed that Taoyuan City and Kagawa Prefecture signed the Taoyuan-Kagawa Exchange Agreement in July 2016 to promote cultural, educational, athletics, and tourism exchanges. Governor Keizo Hamada of Kagawa Prefecture also made a return visit to Taoyuan in August 2016, demonstrating the strong friendship shared by the City and the Prefecture. The delegates received on this day were from Shodoshima Town, one of the most important exhibit area of the Setouchi Triennale, and they will be visiting the 2016 Taoyuan Land Art Festival in their agenda. It is hoped that both sides can establish friendly relationships via these two major art festivals, engage in diverse exchanges, and build a lasting friendship.
Mayor Cheng expressed that the 2016 Taoyuan Land Art Festival aimed to initiate connections between artists and local residents and encourage visitors to view the land and environment via humanist-oriented perspectives. For example, one of the key highlights of the 2016 Land Art Festival was Master Lin Shuen Long's Eternal Sea that was constructed of bamboo and shaped like a sea urchin, integrating the sound of the waves and smell of the sea, providing visitors with a most intimate experience. Japanese artists also provided a number of exhibits for this festival, including DOROBOT - Robot created by Yoshinori Fujii from Niigata as well as A Strange Professor of Archaeology by Takahiko Suzuki.
Mayor Cheng mentioned that the 2016 Taoyuan Land Art Festival included the Xinwu and Bade exhibits that respectively offered ecological features of coastal and bitang (ponds and lakes) landscapes. Visitors may also enjoy Hakka cuisine by visiting Yong'an Harbor, snack boulevards at the exhibit area, and restaurants in Taoyuan City. The city government is also considering the possibility of organizing countryside kitchens so that individual families can host diners to promote local participation.
Mayor Cheng expressed that the Taoyuan City Government originally planned to hold the Land Art Festival every two years, but the success of the Festival this year convinced the City to host the actual Festival in one year and an interim event and exhibit with international conferences, resident participation, and workshops for new and budding artists in the following year in order to gradually develop the Land Art Festival into an artistic brand of Taoyuan. The city government will encourage factory sponsorships for artists. Factories can provide raw materials so that artists can better focus on exercising their creative talents.
Mayor Cheng mentioned that Shodoshima Town has extensive experiences in organizing the Setouchi Triennale, and hopes that the delegates will be able to provide the Taoyuan City Government with recommendations after visiting the 2016 Taoyuan Land Art Festival. Artists from Taiwan and Japan can also establish bridges for cultural exchanges through these art festivals. Residents can also support artists or professional groups to achieve community exchanges and initiate multi-national dialogs.
Mayor Cheng also said that Xinwu District would be hosting the demonstration Agriculture Expo in 2017. The site will cover 25 hectares and include exhibit areas for agricultural art as well as landscape art. Themes to be included in the Expo include Hakka handicraft as well as traditional house construction techniques of the Indigenous Peoples to display Taoyuan's diverse culture. The Agriculture Expo will therefore offer both Taiwanese and Japanese artists with yet another great exchange opportunity in addition to the Land Art Festival.
Chief Representative Hisao Moriguchi of Shodoshima Town expressed that the Setouchi Triennale was held once every three years since 2010, with major works displayed in 2010, 2013, and 2016. However, other works were also exhibited between these festivals. The relationship between Shodoshima Town with Taiwan and Taoyuan began in 2014 with the Land Art Festival and Shodoshima Town Exhibition. Both sides have engaged in a number of mutual visits and enjoyed great experiences working together, and it is hoped that these activities could be continued in the future.
The Shodoshima Town delegates included Chief Representative Hisao Moriguchi, Representative Naoto Sakaguchi, Fukuda District Residents Association Chairperson Hideaki Matsumura, Fukuda Ozaki District Chief Katsuhisa Masuda, Fukutake Foundation representative Wataru Ouchi, and Fukuda District Residents Association Vice Chairperson Yoshikazu Hama.
Taoyuan City Government representatives attending the event included Secretary-General Li Hsien-Ming, Deputy Secretary-General Chiu Chun-Ming, Director-general Lu Wei-Ping of the Department of Urban Development, Director-general Tang Hui-Chen of the Department of Civil Affairs, Director-general Chuang Hsiu-Mei of the Department of Cultural Affairs, Director-general Chen Chia-Chun of the Department of Youth Affairs, Director-general Chiang Chieh-An of the Department of Hakka Affairs, Director-General Chang Tun-Han of the Department of Public Information, CEO Lo Pi-Hsia of the Taoyuan Culture Foundation, and artist Lin Shuen Long.
Source: Taoyuan City Government