TiBE 台北國際書展 2024.2.20-25

Bridges of Culture: 400 Years of Taiwan-Netherlands Connections Unveiled at the 2024 Taipei International Book Exhibition NL Pavilion

26 January 2024 /

Curatorial statement

2024 marks 400 years of historical links between Taiwan and the Netherlands. This is recognised by the Netherlands being named "Guest of Honour" for 2024 Taipei International Book Exhibition. The pavilion explores in three themes the contemporary literature scene, vibrant children's literature and the shared past, the changing nature of our relationship and position in the world are examined and questioned.

Artifacts, documents, facsimiles, and models allow us to explore the early stages of those 400-year long connections -- a rich history beginning with a meeting between Formosa and the "red hair people", and evolving into bonds in which trade, economic and cultural exchange, and a wide spectrum of opportunities come to the front. From the status and broadening cultural and societal recognition of groups including indigenous peoples, the gender diverse, immigration and the LGBTQI+ community, to both Taiwan and the Netherlands espousing tolerance and free speech, we are able to assess progress on Diversity and Inclusivity. Playful and exhibition-relevant interior pieces support Dutch Design and Sustainability, helping stimulate a discussion about the extent to which the Netherlands' creative output is known beyond its stereotypes, while the demountable platform comprising substantially recycled materials provides the backdrop for evaluating circularity, reuse, and re-adaptation in many industries. These themes in tandem usher in debate on what we can look forward to our futures, whether in shared beliefs and ideologies, exchanging ideas, or across economic, cultural and political spheres.

Underpinning all these activities is the presence throughout TIBE of a diverse group of acclaimed Dutch contemporary and children's writers and illustrators, who will deliver a host of talks and workshops. With books and materials available covering historical, contemporary and especially children's literature, including the work of lauded guest of honour, Thé Tjong-Khing, visitors can explore and enjoy the Netherlands' vibrant literary scene.

We are proud to be friends.

Introduction – NL Pavilion

Welcome, friends! Come and explore the Netherlands right here in Taiwan. It is a peaceful journey through diverse Dutch landscapes, each wonderful in its own way. Take a step away from the busy book fair, and explore our three activity zones: a fun workshop, a discussion forum, and a play area for kids.

The flowing curtains that encircle you form the backdrop of your journey—the vast oceans, flat lands, and moving dunes of the Netherlands. These curtains surround the stories of the present, the past, and what's to come, connecting inside and outside, East and West.

Behind the scenes, all exhibition materials have been chosen and put together in a way that makes sure that they will enjoy more than just one use, and that in their next life, they create something even better!

Join us in this special journey, where we tell the tales of our shared adventures, hopes, and dreams.