Thu, Jul 12, 2018 - Page 4 News List

INTERVIEW: Tainan Art Museum aims to clarify, display history

‘FOR THE PEOPLE’:In addition to research centers and exhibitions, the museum plans to offer something for everyone, including a cafe, rest spaces and shopping

By Ling Mei-hsueh and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Typically, an artwork leaves a conservation center once it has been restored, but the museum wants to understand why the artwork was damaged in the first place, Pan said.

Like a hospital for art, the center is to conduct research on examining, preserving and repairing artwork, he said.

Thanks to support from the central government, the project is to receive NT$30 million (US$984,220) from the Forward-looking Infrastructure Development Program, he added.

To expand its audience, the museum also plans to include a center for children’s art, of which board of supervisors chairman and artist Chen Huei-tung (陳輝東) is an expert, Pan said.

Amid public calls for equality for older people, there is much the museum can offer, such as exhibitions, a cafe, spaces for rest and even shopping, he said.

“As long as the lights are on at the Tainan Art Museum, everyone is welcome,” Pan said, adding that it would differ from elitist museums that only follow Western trends.

When it has organized and clarified Taiwan’s 400-year history and attracts people of all ages, allowing them to experience the joy of appreciating beauty, it would have become a museum that is approachable for everyone, he said.

Regarding the museum’s inaugural exhibition, Pan said it would aim to respond to the history, development of art and current trends in Tainan.

It would feature the latest technology, as well as a traditional sense of beauty, he said, adding that the museum has already selected a curator and team for the exhibition.

For contemporary exhibitions, the museum is to work with researchers based in Tainan, as well as Tainan National University of the Arts, he added.

The Taipei Fine Arts Museum opened more than 30 years ago, while the Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts is also approaching its 30th anniversary, Pan said.

While museums that were built first saw earlier success, the focus of museums that have come later is to find their own position, he said.

What is important is how the Tainan Art Museum differs from other museums, contributes to Tainan and promotes art from Tainan — and Taiwan in general — to the world, he added.

Pan said he hopes that it will become an important milestone for the development of culture in Taiwan in the 21st century, and that it will develop symbiotically with Taiwanese culture, unite the cultural identity of Tainan residents and use creativity to elevate the city’s competitiveness.

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