17 March 2018

An example of public art in the Metro in Taipei, Taiwan

Image taken from Daqiaotou Station

Daydream by Joyce Ho/Craig Quintero, Taipei Main Station.

Description of the sculpture in the picture above

A video I took to try and record the music that gets plaid when the train approaches the metro station, music like this is played at most metro stations in Taiwan.

Last year I was fortunate to have the opportunity to go to Taipei in Taiwan before heading off to Australia to do my artist Residency.

Whilst I was there I could not help to notice the public art in some of the Metro stations. This ranged from stand-alone sculpture to wall sculpture. Not only that but when a train approaches a station music is usually played to warn people that the train is coming. It is a nice feature as it seemed to make me feel quite relaxed which is quite nice considering that Metro or Tube stations back at home in the UK are very busy environments which can evoke a stressful experience. Although I did speak to some Taiwanese people and they felt the music can be enoying as mostly the same music is played all the time.

It was also interesting to see the ceramic sculpture placed inside a glass wall at Daqiaotou Station. These objects were very curious, some of them looked as though they could have some kind of function and they were similar to some kind of household object. The choice of colour for these objects allowed me to just focus on the purity of object. Sorry but unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the artist name and description of the artwork, but if anyone knows feel free to let me know.

The half human half bird like figure at Taipei Main Station created by Ho/Craig Quintero gave me quite a big surprise. This very surreal like figure just stands alone almost like it is watching over people. It seems out of place, almost cartoonish and playful. I liked the description as the artist seems to want to offer people a brake from the monotony of everyday life and I kind of understand that as it douse create an unusual presence.

Overall what I learnt from this experience was the potential art has in creating or contributing towards people's well being within a built environment. Coming from my own experience I think the quality of life in present day society can be a stressful experience. Everything is fast paced, some public places becomes immensely crowded, people have stressful jobs, just like in the description of the human-bird like sculpture life can be monotonous, society can make one feel isolated and like a cog in the machine. I think art can provide a platform to interact with people in a public space, to be apart of our everyday life, perhaps to add curiosity and meaning to our lives, to evoke conversation and to entice us to lean.