Calendar

About C-LAB

Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab (C-LAB) was initiated in 2018 by the Taiwan Living Arts Foundation of the Ministry of Culture, to the aim of becoming the leading site of contemporary culture in Taiwan, with “innovation” as its core belief and directive. It is a vision for future experimentation and a nexus for international exchange, an imagining of a culture rooted in Asian and Taiwanese everyday experiences. Domestically, it serves as a physical incubation center for creative endeavors. The hope is to catalyze the interplay between all forms of creativity while developing an open and inclusive cultural landscape or social environment.

C-LAB’s location was once a military base. Before that, this site was home to the Taiwan Provincial Government’s Central Research Institute at Da’an, which took over from the Japanese colonial era Industrial Research Institute of the Taiwan Governor-General’s Office. In 1950, it became the Ministry of National Defense’s Air Force Command Headquarters. C-LAB is working in the public construction planning phase to carry out inventory of campus properties and revitalize usable space, opening up the site to cultural professionals and technical support teams who together participate in cross-disciplinary or interdisciplinary collaboration and co-creation. Through programs such as artistic cultural innovation experimentation, exhibitions, performances, screening events, cross-domain co-creation, international cultural exchange, educational promotion, and community service, as well as the establishment of innovative experimentation, new art and culture co-habitats, urban outdoor green space, and other multi-purpose facilities, we are building on a vision for continued socio-cultural experimentation and practice.

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Monument

The Old Office Building, once the center of the Air Force Command Headquarters, and Political Warfare Building were designated as national monument in 2024. The east and west elevations feature a zigzag design to avoid direct solar gain.
Connecting to the Old Office Building and facing the main entrance on Renai Road, the Political Warfare Building was strategically important, whose second floor used to house the office of the Air Force Commander.

Ancillary Facilities of the Monument

There are 15 facilities including the Zhongzheng Hall, US-Aid Building, Communications Office, Document and Telegram Center, Military Affairs Office, air-raid shelters, sentry posts, bunkers ,the internal sentry post, and the main gate guard house and duty officer room named ancillary facilities of the monument.

Major Events

1939-

Industrial Research Institute of the Taiwan Governor-General’s Office

33,000 pings (equiv. to 109091 square meters) of land was acquired during the Japanese colonial period at the “Daan 12 jia” Administration Zone, for the establishment of the Industrial Research Institute. The Taiwan Governor-General’s Office prioritized the relocation of existing lab equipment, so procurement of the land and the building of Number 2 Hall (now C-LAB Old Office Building) became key projects in its Phase 1 Plan. The Building Construction Section of the Taiwan Governor-General’s Office was commissioned to build Number 2 Hall, with aspirations of building the largest scientific facility on the island and have it completed by 1944.

Front elevation and main entrance of Number 2 Hall in the early days of Taiwan’s retrocession. Photo: LIFE Magazine

1948-1949

Ministry of National Defense Occupancy Following Relocation of the Nationalist Government

From 1948 to 1949, the Government of the R.O.C. and personnel relocated to Taiwan, and with its priority towards national defense reassigned Industrial Research Institute premises as MND Ren-ai Base and later as Air Force Command Headquarters.

1950

Air Force Command Headquarters, Ministry of National Defense (MND)

Air Force Command Headquarters was formally set up on this site in 1949 by the Ministry of National Defense, serving as the top commanding organization of air defense and combat in Taiwan. Research data from 1951 show that the organizational units of Air Force Command Headquarters included General Headquarters, Consul’s Office, Political Office, Supervisory Office, Statistics Office, Liaison Office, the First to Fifth Ministries, as well as 9 Corps of Deputy, Air Defense, Communications, Meteorology, Finance, Medical, Construction, Military Justice, and General Services. Restructuring of the organizational hierarchy in later times resulted in a markedly different structure of the R.O.C. Air Force today.

Air Force Command Headquarters, MND in 1966. Photo: Air Force Command Headquarters, MND.

2015

Taiwan Air Force Innovation Base

On October 5, 2012, Air Force Command Headquarters, MND relocated to Zhong Yong Military Base in the Dazhi area of Zhongshan District, Taipei City. The Executive Yuan proceeded to revitalize the newly vacated site and named it “Taiwan Air Force Innovation Base” in 2015 by inviting organizations and groups across a variety of disciplines to participate in programs of youth entrepreneurship and social innovation.

2017

Culture Lab Preparatory Group

In 2017, the Ministry of Culture tasked the “Cultural Lab at TAF” preparatory group with transforming 7.15 hectares (71500 square meters) of land and buildings into a platform for future development of contemporary culture in Taiwan. Its mission is to establish the ecological and support systems necessary in the evolution of the site from a program of strategic military importance to that of culture.

2018

Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab (C-LAB)

Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab was initiated in 2018 by the Taiwan Living Arts Foundation of the Ministry of Culture. Striving to become a new type of art and cultural organization, C-LAB explores the possible intersections of art, culture, technology, and society beyond the routine. C-LAB brings the public closer to the campus by creating rich and diversified experiences. Internationally, it proactively connects and collaborates with institutions from home and abroad while devoting itself to interorganizational and cross-domain exchanges/development in terms of art, technology, and research via talent cultivation, co-creation, R&D, exhibitions and performances.

2019

Taiwan Sound Lab and IP LAB

Working with the Institute for Research and Coordination in Acoustics / Music (IRCAM) of the Pompidu Center in France, the Taiwan Sound Lab is established at C-LAB, with art, science, and technology embedded at its core to promote technology transfers, musical composition, technical training, mutual site visits, research curriculum, co-production, and co-presentation.

With the aim to bolster Taiwan’s indigenous cultural output while aligning with international high-tech industry-wide developments, the Ministry of Culture with the support of the central government’s Forward-Looking Infrastructure Plan has created an “IP LAB” in the renovated former badminton stadium. The “4DViews” system provides a powerful and precise dynamic volumetric motion capturing system, the sixth such facility built in the world and the second most advanced of its type in Asia. Its purpose is to support the development of original IP (intellectual property) content in combination with various forms of technical productions and creative applications.

now

Open C-LAB

The Taiwan Living Arts Foundation has been renovating and reorganizing the spaces while improving the environments on the campus based on the three purposes of contemporary art, technology media, and social innovation. The foundation executes the work of the monument restoration and revitalization project in compliance with the Ministry of Culture, endeavoring to incubate the innovative cultural ecosystem and host public cultural events. In addition, it gradually provides more residency spaces for art and cultural organizations/groups and builds up an industrial cluster, encouraging co-creation and co-inspiration among diversified cultures on the campus.