The Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office (TECRO) in the U.S. invited many AAFSW members to the Twin Oaks Estate in Washington, DC on Tuesday, September 20, 2018 for the opening of “Rebirth,” an amazing public art installation by the Taiwanese master sculptor Kang Muxiang. Kang’s seven monumental embryonic sculptures, created using recycled elevator cables from one of the world’s tallest buildings, Taipei 101, were indeed unveiled for the first time to the Washington, DC public while the sculptor explained the method he used to create these incredible sculptures during the reception that followed.
Twin Oaks, an English Georgian Renaissance-style mansion situated in Northwest Washington DC, was constructed in 1888. It originally served as the summer residence for Gardiner Greene Hubbard, the founder of the National Geographic Society. The Taiwan Government purchased Twin Oaks in 1982.
Kang Mi-Xiang was born in Taiwan in 1961. Kang was first introduced to the traditional woodcarving skill at the age of 13. Kang’s work is the combination of traditional craftsmanship and contemporary artistic elements. In 2013, Kang Mu-Xiang was invited by the Tapei 101 building to create an environmentally friendly artwork with the steel cables that were previously used in the 101’s four elevators. Kang’s work has been exhibited at the plaza of the Tapei 101 building as well as in the city of Karlsruhe, Germany, to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the founding of the city. Kang finds the everlasting life within used materials. Whether it is driftwood or retired elevator cables, Kang is able to renew them, transform them, and bring a brand new life out from within them.
AAFSW wishes to thank the sculptor, Kang Muxiand, and his assistant Karen Kang, as well as Ambassador Stanley Kao, the Representative of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the United States and Yuton Lee, officer of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the United States for their invitation to this wonderful and educational evening.
Joanna Athanasopoulos Owen, PhD