Romantic Route 3 Arts Festival to kick off across Taiwan

To promote the cultural landscapes of Taiwan Romantic Route 3 (also known as Provincial Highway 3), the Romantic Route 3 Arts Festival (浪漫台三線藝術季) will be held from Oct. 19 through Dec. 15 at various locations across Taiwan, including Taipei City, Taoyuan City, Hsinchu County, Miaoli County, and Taichung City.

Hakka Affairs Council Minister Lee Yung-de stated that this is the inaugural Hakka-themed collaboration between the central government and five city/county governments, which made delegating and integrating tasks a big challenge. Lee added that the importance of the festival is to encourage local residents to create art and rediscover wonderful stories in Hakka settlements through the lens of artists.

Wu Han-chung (吳漢中), who was the chief design officer of the 2018 Taichung World Flora Exposition (臺中世界花卉博覽會), was invited to serve as the design director of the Hakka arts festival. He is determined to raise the profile of Taiwan Romantic Route 3 at home and abroad through design and arts at the cultural event.

56 artists from 6 countries will be invited to create on-site and exhibit their artworks in the two-month event. Visitors can take their time to stroll along Provincial Highway 3 and appreciate the fascinating art creations.

The festival encompasses three themes: waterways, highways, and trails, which are intertwined with time to form a glamorous avenue that complements the downshifting lifestyle of Hakka villages.

At the opening event of the festival on Oct. 19 and 20, Taiwanese artist Lin Shuen-long (林舜龍) will bring his creative process to Taipei’s Ketagalan Boulevard. Holding his hand-drawn manuscript, Lin elaborated on his ideas with excitement at a press conference on Sept. 24. He will use plenty of bamboo materials and trays for sunning persimmons to build his installation art in front of the Presidential Office Building. Visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy dried persimmons and have some tea while they bathe in sunshine.

Lin noted that sun-dried ingredients, which convey the importance of cherishing foods and enduring hardships, are an essential part of Hakka culture. Lin’s artwork will serve as prologue to the arts festival, paying tribute to Taiwan’s fertile land and beautiful traditions.