Minister of Culture Lee Yung-te expressed his condolences over the demise of architect Wang Chiu-hwa (王秋華) who passed away on June 14 at the age of 96. MOC will propose awarding a presidential citation posthumously to Wang in recognition of her life-long contributions.
Minister Lee pointed out that Wang dedicated herself to architectural education and profession for nearly 60 years, and brought humanistic concepts to her designs. She believed that buildings should serve the purpose of enhancing social well-being, and placed importance on the relationship between environmental ethnics and aesthetics in her designs.
Born in Beijing in 1925, Wang earned a degree in architecture from National Central University in Chongqing, China. She left for the United States in 1946 to study architecture at the University of Washington. Afterward, she obtained a Master’s degree in Architecture and Urban Design at Columbia University in New York in 1949.
In the 1960s, Wang worked for American architect Percival Goodman at his studio, and then resettled in Taipei in 1979 to continue her design work and teach at National Taipei University of Technology as well as Tamkang University. She was part of the first generation of Taiwanese architects in the post-war era in Taiwan.
In 2003, Wang was recognized as an Outstanding Architect of Taiwan, and in 2020, she received the National Award for the Arts in architecture, becoming the first female prize-winner since the architecture award was established in 1997.
Over the past years, her most significant contribution to Taiwan was based on promoting the modern architecture of university libraries that she came to earn her sobriquet as the "Mother of Taiwanese libraries." Her masterpieces include the Center for American Study of Academia Sinica, Chang Ching Yu Memorial Library at Chung Yuan Christian University, National Chung Hsing University library, Gymnasium at Chinese Culture University, to name a few.