Column 5th Tectonic & Context
Architecture is built on the foundation of material and environment. Using local materials and coping with local conditions are the two most important issues in contemporary architecture. Architecture’s tectonic and environmental context not only have to respond to local micro architecture and urban scale, but also macro global issues. Especially, Taiwan is an island where natural resources are scarce and use of land faces strict limitations; in recent years, Taiwan has seen increased frequency of extreme storm weather as the result of global warming and climate change, which has impacted Taiwanese people’s everyday life. As sea level gradually rises, it posses a serious threat to Taiwan’s urban survival and development. As a social action, architecture should address and solve global and local environmental issues as soon as possible.
Over the past thirty years, Taiwan’s manufacturing industry leveraged the unique characteristics of ultra-short supply chain and super-sized supply circle to build the world-famous “Made in Taiwan” label into the synonym of diverse, flexible, and rapid. These “Made in Taiwan” industries are limited by insufficient natural resources, and so people in Taiwan meticulously recycle and reutilize all kinds of resources. In addition to various products made from raw materials, people recycle used products and break them down into raw materials; recycling and reproduction have thus developed gradually into important industries of Taiwan. “Re:Made in Taiwan” not only will give rise to next generation economic miracle, but also generate possibilities for next generation architectural production.Taiwan’s everyday architecture reflects the status quo of the architecture industry, as well as the context of its environment and society. Common tools that can be found everywhere, reproduced materials, and confident constructions carried out by amateur architects are illustrations of how Taiwanese people try to overcome existing barriers with an optimistic and positive attitude facing global and local environment at the front of architecture, using the experience of Re:Made in Taiwan to reproduce the diverse, flexible, and rapid architectural production model. This everyday architecture not only reflects the context of life, but also manifests “Re:Made in Taiwan” industries’ tectonic to gradually change architecture.
As artificial structures of massive volumes, architectures face all kinds of environmental and social challenges. In addition to being regarded as cultural art and economic industry, architecture needs to become a kind of social action to really solve environmental and social issues. “Re:Made in Taiwan” not only shares with the world how Taiwanese everyday architecture responds to tectonic and context, it also explains how, as a world citizen, Taiwan is proactively proposing solutions for complex composite issues of environment and society.