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September, 27, 2016

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Taoyuan Land Art Festival goes global

"While Japan's Setouchi Triennale is recognized as the most prestigious art festival in Asia, I hope Taoyuan Land Art Festival can serve as Taiwan's most important event on the international art stage," Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsang (鄭文燦) said Thursday.

Cheng made the remarks when receiving a group of visitors from the town of Shodoshima in Kangawa Prefecture.

In the company of Cheng, the group toured the installation art dubbed "DOROBOT," created by Japanese artist Yoshinori Fujii with five water towers and faucets and located in farmland in Putting Community, Xiwu District, one of the venues of the land art festival, which runs from Sept. 9 to Sept. 25.

Under the instruction of local artist Wang Yu-hsiang, Cheng and Shodoshima's council speaker Mr. Moriguchi jointly enjoyed the experience of braiding a rope with straw. "The friendship between Xinwu and Shodoshima will be tied together tightly like this rope," Cheng said after braiding the rope in cooperation with Moriguchi.

Regular Art Exchanges

Cheng said he hoped Xinwu and Shodoshima would have the opportunity to conduct regular art exchanges in the future. Xinwu District Leader Hsu Tung-chih will lead a delegation to visit Shodoshima next year to realize the exchanges.

Cheng said Xinwu is a famous Hakkanese town, noted for its Mitaimu (米苔目, dry rice noodles), while Kangawa Prefecture is the hometown of Udon noodles (烏龍麵). He also took the opportunity to share with Moriguchi his expertise of how to make Mitaimu.

The Moriguchi-led Japanese delegation also visited the main venue of the land art festival in Xinwu, where they toured a number of works by resident artists, including Immortal Sea, Floating Flower, and the bamboo-made Fiddler Crab, among others, and were deeply impressed with the significance and stories behind the works.

The delegation returned to Japan after winding up their three-day trip in Taiwan on Sept. 22. In addition to Cheng, other VIPs accompanying the delegation on the final day of their tour of the exhibition included City Councilor Chiu Chia-liang, Deputy Secretary-General Chiu Chun-ming, Agriculture Department Chief Hsieh Chang-sheng, Hakka Affairs Department Chief Chiang Chieh-an, Youth Affairs Department Chief Chen Chia-ruei, Cultural Affairs Department Secretary-General Lin Li-chuan and Civil Affairs Department Secretary-General Chen Ru-wen, among others.

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Taoyuan City Mayor Cheng Wen-tsang, front left, demonstrates how to make rice noodles next to Mr. Moriguchi, front right, council speaker of Shodoshima, as Moriguchi's Japanese delegation tours the 2016 Taoyuan Land Art Festival. (Courtesy of Taoyuan City Government)

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