The Executive Yuan has approved an eight-year reconstruction-and-expansion program to transform the Taipei-based Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab (C-LAB), once a heavily guarded military airbase, into a creative powerhouse that encourages the convergence of contemporary art, technology, and society.
The program spearheaded by the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Science and Technology, and the Ministry of Economic Affairs will begin with a two-year planning period, during which the current advisory group will be expanded into a full-fledged committee for soliciting ideas on reconstructing the site's current monuments and condemned buildings through public hearings. Aspects of urban planning, site design, and architecture will also be considered.
Following the full spectrum of ideas raised from public hearings, a comprehensive renovation plan will be completed and submitted to the nation's highest administrative body within the next two years for approval.
In the second phase of the eight-year program, the C-LAB site encompassing centers for artistic, technological, and social innovation will be tasked with driving advancements in these three key areas through interdepartmental collaboration and partnerships with Taiwanese and international art institutions.
During the preparatory stage from 2018 through 2019, the Ministry has positioned C-LAB as an innovative cultural institution conducive to creation and experimentation. The Taiwan Living Arts Foundation (臺灣生活美學基金會), the management team which took over the site in 2018, engaged in dialogue with all sectors of society through forums and events to achieve public consensus on the refined vision of C-LAB.
With such efforts, C-LAB has gradually developed into not only a cross-disciplinary platform for artistic innovation, but also a center that offers public exhibitions, experimental festivals, transnational exchanges, educational research and workshops, and community cultural attractions.
Furthermore, since its official launch in August 2018, the site has formed partnerships with prestigious art institutions worldwide, including Centre Pompidou of France, the Waag Society in Amsterdam, Germany's ZKM Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe, and the New York-based Performa biennial for live performance arts.
Located in Daan District of the Taiwanese capital, C-LAB was once the Ministry of National Defense's Air Force Command Headquarters, the nation's highest office of command for aviation defense and combat, before it was transferred over to the Ministry of Culture in 2017.