Contemporary art in China: Exploring China's Flourishing Art Scene

Open House Taipei – Open Taiwan Design Research Institute (TDRI)

Taiwan Design Center (TDC) was upgraded to Taiwan Design Research Institute (TDRI) in 2020. Not only has it gone through transformation of organizational structure and system, TDRI has also redesigned its logo and established the overall visual scheme of the organization, continuing the overall transformation from the outside in.

From November 28 to 29 this year, TDRI participates in one of the most important global architectural design events—Open House, an international event of urban space experience originated in London, UK, opening up TDRI office space and inviting the public to experience how cold and lifeless office space can showcase a sense of design. “Open House” originated in London in 1992; the annual event is a network of urban space experience activities in nearly 50 cities around the world. The event lasts 48 hours, allowing citizens to freely visit urban spaces usually inaccessible to them free of charge, such as: 10 Downing Street (residence of British Prime Minister), BT Tower, U.S. Embassy in London, and London Underground Head Office, and opening up the entire city into a classroom of architectural aesthetics. The event has attracted over 2 million total visitors annually since its inauguration.

In 2020, Taipei becomes the third Asian city to join the lineup of Open House, after Macau and Osaka. Also, because of Taiwan’s successful control and prevention of the pandemic, Taipei joins Zurich, Switzerland, as the only two participating cities in the world to open up all physical spaces to the public this year!

TDRI opens its office space to the public, for which renowned local architect, Johnny Chiu of J.C. Architecture, was in charge of the overall spatial planning and implementation. In addition to minimalist configuration of individual desks, there are also recliner and pool table areas for employees to take a break and mingle, creating an enjoyable and relaxed ambience. The floral decorations are designed by Alfie Lin of CN Flower, soothing the eyes and spirits of the employees. There is more than just the office space, TDRI also has Taiwan’s most beautiful design library, “Not Just Library;” Johnny Chiu and the team at J.C. Architecture have transformed the bathhouse of the old tobacco factory, which had been sealed off for decades, through overall spatial planning and design, giving new life to the 80-year-old indoor bathhouse. The outdoor space of the bathhouse features an outdoor garden designed by landscape designer Shu Yuan Wu of Motif Planning & Design Consultants. In addition to indigenous species of Taiwan, the garden also boasts species of trees that are rarely seen in foreign countries in aim to take reading outdoors. Ordinary office workers usually spend at least 8 hours a day in office, if the time there became fun and interesting, the employees would learn to work well and enjoy life more; if work was more than just work, but also a way of life, the output would also become more creative.

TDRI has continually promoted introduction of aesthetics to Taiwan’s public sector in recent years; however, to change Taiwan, TDRI must start with itself. Through Open House, TDRI becomes the starting point of the promotion, and invites citizens to visit the usually inaccessible site of design, helping them to not only learn more about the city of Taipei, but also embrace and accept Taipei’s diversity and experience the beauty of design in daily life. Design aesthetics can blossom from trivial details in life. Open up yourself, change the society.

China Underground

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