Taiwan: form for function

by on 週五, 16 九月 2011 評論
An interview with Rodrigo Alejandro Aguilar from El Salvador

“My expectations were pretty much about structures and temples, and modern buildings. I was just pretty excited to know the lifestyle of the people over here…how they live and how they relate the way of their living with their buildings,” Rodrigo Alejandro Aguilar says in his lilting Salvadoran accent.

The main objective of the International Youth Week: Centennial Homestay event, was to create exposure for a country flourishing 100 years after independence. However, the international participants, like Rodrigo Alejandro Aguilar, have been selected according to excellence in their given fields - not only creating ambassadors for Taiwan, but also establishing a network of influential youths, who may later come to shape the country's role in the international community.

Thanks to the Say Taiwan project, this Salvadoran civil engineering student, Rodrigo Alejandro Aguilar, is in Asia for the first time, marveling at the vertical virtuosity of Taiwan's structures. Mesmerized by both the high skyline and the skillful use of space, he responds to Taiwan in terms of form and function.

“I find the architecture over here very attractive, and also efficient. Taiwanese people use very efficiently the space that they have, because there is a very high population here in this country, although it’s a very small island. So, they know how to handle that. They know how to use the space that they have so that they can fit everything… it’s very organized, it’s not that chaotic over here…compared to the big cities I have been to, for example, New York, Los Angeles, London… even those in my country.”

Alejandro, however, stays in the countryside - with his host family in Meinong village. He describes the meticulously precise rows of planted crops as something he has only ever seen before in Farmville - a popular Facebook-based, virtual farming game.

"The thing that most surprised me about the city,where I'm staying, is the protected areas that they have. Also, the yellow butterfly village and the Buddhist temple that they have over there - that was the most amazing thing that I have ever seen. The bulding, it’s so old but it’s well constructed, well-organized in matters of space… It kinda resembles decoration that we have over in my country. Colonial churches that we have, their decoration is pretty similar - the usage of gold and colors… it’s very attractive also,” he elaborates.

“What I've noticed is that they pretty much have their own buildings just for living - just what you really need, nothing luxurious. For example the house that I'm staying (in), it’s divided by two. So, on one side is my host family, and (on) the other side is the sister of my host family. They have a specific space of land that they can use. They use the space that they have for the things that they do, because they are all farmers. I think they are pretty organized... in the backyard, they have a few crops. Then, on the other side they have a few animals that they raise, and then they have the space where they live."

“The houses - they’re more like a drawer construction. It’s kinda smart to build the way up, instead of the way here", Rodrigo Alejandro Aguilar concludes, gesticulating with his arms wide open.

"It’s pretty basic but beautiful as the same time.”

Video filmed by C. Phiv and H. Haller, edited by C. Phiv
Photo courtesy of R. A. Aguilar


Want to know more about Rodrigo's saty in Taiwan? Read his blog on Homestay website

Hallie Haller

Hallie is a filmmaker/writer/multimedia-maker who hails from South Africa. She comes from a background in commercials production, blogging and viral video, and works freelance in Taipei.

海莉是一位來自南非的電影工作者/作家/多媒體製作人. 她的專業背景為廣告製作 經營部落格和上傳個人影片 目前身為在台北的自由工作者.





« 一月 2021 »
星期一 星期二 星期三 星期四 星期五 星期六 星期日
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

目前有 6917 個訪客 以及 沒有會員 在線上