Wed, May 25, 2011 - Page 13 News List

Handmade headquarters

The area around Taipei’s Zhongshan MRT Station is filled with stores selling one-of-a-kind items crafted by some of Taiwan’s best-regarded artists and designers

By Catherine Shu  /  Staff Reporter

Wu Xing Design Company

Photo: Catherine Shu, Taipei Times

Anchored by two important cultural institutions — the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei (台北當代藝術館) and SPOT Taipei Film House (台北光點) — the neighborhood around the Zhongshan MRT Station (中山捷運站) is home to some of the country’s top designers and artists.

Zhongshan North Road features exclusive boutiques, including Shiatzy Chen’s (夏姿) flagship store at 49-1, Zhongshan Rd Sec 2 (中山北路二段49-1號), but the lanes and alleys around the MRT station are filled with smaller independent boutiques selling affordable items by emerging designers that range from clothing to ceramics. Read on for a few of the area’s highlights.

61Note

Address: 6, Alley 10, Ln 64, Nanjing W Rd, Taipei City (台北市南京西路64巷10弄6號)

Telephone: (02) 2550-5950

On the Net: 61note.blogspot.com

61Notes’s corner space is home to a tiny cafe, a basement gallery space and a shop selling a carefully picked selection of quality kitchenware, stationery and bags that have a minimalist aesthetic and are handmade by Taiwanese and Japanese designers.

MBmore (岩筆模)

Address: Zhongshan Metro Mall B39 (台北捷運中山地下街B39), near exit R9 between Zhongshan and Shuanglian (雙連) MRT stations

Telephone: (02) 2523-7737

On the Net: mbmore1024.blogspot.com

Located in Zhongshan Metro Mall, MBmore sells work by more than 40 Taiwanese print artists. Founded by artist Lin Ren-hsin (林仁信), MBmore also hosts workshops and exhibitions. Original artwork from Taiwanese artists is sold in MBmore, but there are also plenty of affordable limited edition and signed prints starting from NT$300. Other items for sale include silk-screened canvas totes and individual lead type from Ri Xing Typography (日星鑄字行).

De Stijl (識得)

Address: 20, Ln 33, Chifeng St, Taipei City (台北市赤峰街33巷20號)

Telephone: (02) 2552-7725

On the Net: www.destijl.com.tw

Opened by collector Eli Hsieh (謝慶良), De Stijl carries a carefully curated selection of vintage American and European art deco, art nouveau and modernist jewelry. The store also has an impressive selection of unusual sterling silver charms, many of which have moving parts. Current examples in the store include a tiny sterling silver ship in a glass bottle and a wedding cake that lifts open to reveal a bride and groom.

Wu Xing Design Company (五行創藝設計)

Address: Zhongshan Metro Mall B41 (台北捷運中山地下街B41)

Telephone: (02) 2625-1498

On the Net: www.wxad.com.tw

MBmore’s next-door neighbor, Wu Xing, is comanaged by the National Taiwan University of Arts (國立臺灣藝術大學) and gives a platform to Taiwanese ceramic artists and jewelry makers. A shelf that features handmade mugs in a beautiful array of textures, glazes and finishes takes up one wall, while a case is filled with exquisitely crafted sterling silver jewelry in contemporary designs.

Booday (蘑菇)

Address: 18-1, Ln 25, Nanjing W Rd, Taipei City (台北市南京西路25巷18-1號)

Telephone: (02) 2552-5552 X11

On the Net: www.mogu.com.tw; haveaboodayshop.blogspot.com

In the past eight years Booday (蘑菇) has grown from a small graphics design firm into one of Taiwan’s best-known lifestyle brands. Its building a few blocks away from Zhongshan MRT station still retains a sense of intimacy, however, with a sunny second-floor cafe and a small boutique filled with Booday’s own wares and items from Taiwanese and Japanese artists and designers. The brand’s signature is its careful attention to details such as the soft texture of its organic T-shirts and hand-illustrated designs that use motifs from daily life in Taiwan. The cafe also regularly hosts live music performances, workshops and art shows.

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