Factory Building 1．A Place of Emptiness
※〈一號廠房．空白之所： AR 工作坊〉為日裔加拿大籍藝術家Tomoyo Ihaya所指導的〈創新混合媒材藝術工作坊〉之前導工作。
Philosophy behind the Transdisciplinary Creative Practice and Statement on the Workshop
一號廠房 AR 工作坊
The Bureau of Cultural Heritage, Ministry of Culture announced that the Imperial Japanese Navy’s Sixth Fuel Factory is one of the few existing military industrial relics in Taiwan. It not only bore testimony to the Second World War, but also shared some architectural characteristics of a military dependents’ village such as “embedded apartment” and “roofless attic.” This rare historic site preserves the legacies of war, technology, and the culture of military dependents’ village. After the event of self-demolition in the Factory Building 1, this building is still disused in the area of Northern Sekidosaki. Since its former dwellers have been replaced in other places, it is now a place of emptiness. Rather than including the main part of this historic gem, the Hsinchu City Government decided to take care of this building in the way of imagery or partial preservation. With regard to the preservation and restoration of historic sites, what else can we do in terms of interpreting historical events apart from reconstructing and revitalizing the sites with cultural creative goods? How should we understand the traces left by its former dwellers in the “reconstructed” building? How can a diasporic space where specific events occurred connect contemporary narratives, and engage in dialogues with cultural memories, and evoke historical associations? A simple reconstruction of imagery without productive dialogues and interactions with that space will inevitably turn that historic space into an “object” which merely marks the past but fails to revive any cultural language, event, and memory. This place of emptiness bombards us with the questions about the political thinking of this diasporic space as well as the correspondence between history and reality. In her literary work The Old Capital, Chu Tien-Hsin, a writer of the second generation of Chinese from Mainland China, evolved a writing style known as the geography-based history: history becomes geography, and memories are tantamount to archeology. Such an approach raised many fundamental issues regarding history from the mutual reference among self-memory, historical literature, and physical space. Reliving historical memories according to the map drawn in the Japanese colonial period, Chu superimposed them on the space of “spiritual ruins,” which is also a certain literary walking on “the correspondence between history and reality.” The workshop excerpted some paragraphs about the memories of the Nationalist Government’s retreat to Taiwan during the Chinese Civil War from the works of writers who are the first or second generation of Chinese from Mainland China, including Luo Fu, Luo Yi-Jun, Chu Tien-Hsin, Su Wei-Cheng, Chang Ta-Chuen, and Chang Chi-Jiang. Their writings not only reflect the spiritual exile of the diasporans after 1949, but also map the imagination of their hometowns (in China). These quoted paragraphs are scatted in the ruins of the abandoned Factory Building 1. The visitors are welcomed to harness the AR visual interface to enter this space of simulacra where their imagination can be infinitely stretched.