Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles a success of Chiayi's old building rejuvenation effort

Chiayi invites applications for the government's subsidy in old house revitalization

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Inside Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles (Photo by the museum's FB page)

Inside Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles (Photo by the museum's FB page)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Cultural Affairs Bureau of Chiayi City announced on July 25 that the Ministry of Culture will launch the "Private Old Buildings Preservation and Rejuvenation Plan" (私有老建築保存再生計畫) that will subsidize projects up to 50 percent of the proposed budgets.

The announcement was made in a press event at Chiayi's Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles (台灣花磚博物館), a successful example of old edifice revitalization for the city in southwestern Taiwan, reported Central News Agency.

A former timber store, Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles was given new life and transformed into a cultural venue thanks to the effort by a group of local salary workers who have a passion for "floral tiles" in a project that received renovation subsidies from the City in 2015.


a corner at Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles (Photo by the museum's FB page)

According to operator of the museum James Hsu (徐嘉彬), the building used to be the largest timer dealer owned by Taiwanese businessmen during the Japanese rule. It was once the subject of renowned Taiwanese painter Tan Ting-pho (陳澄波), and was also the place where the first piece of work by Taiwanese sculptor Pu Tian-sheng (蒲添生) was created.

"Many facts of history are overlooked, but they tend to be the most important ones." said Hsu.

Reputed to be the "Capital of Taiwan Timber" and the "Home of Taiwan Cypress," Chiayi has endeavored to help preserve the City's wood houses through the establishment of "Timber Bank," noted Twu Shiing-jer (涂醒哲), Mayor of Chiayi.

Subsidies have been granted to a total of 45 projects since the inception of the old house rejuvenation program in 2014, involving assistance provided by experienced carpenters to return old buildings to their former glory, as can be seen through the example of Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles, CNA quoted Twu as saying.

The Cultural Affairs Bureau of Chiayi City held a press event at Museum of Ancient Taiwan Tiles (CNA)