1. Description of Our Community
Jioufen, located in Ruei Fang township in the northeast part of Taiwan, was once called “ little Hong Kong”. It is five kilometers away to the east part of Ruei Fang township. The buildings were built along the steep hills and formed an unique and charming scenery. It is opposite to the Keelung mountain, facing the ocean and surrounded by the mountains with the lush forests. The resulting gold rush hastened the village's development and Jioufen once had the highest population in Taipei County at that time. However, with the decline of the coal and gold mining production, local people in the town went to the big cities to look for better job opportunities and Jioufen started to become a deserted place. Only the elder people, kids, cats and dogs still stay in the village. The only thing which has not changed is the picturesque scenery. The town hall decided to reorganize Jioufen to be the art village in the late 1970s and the early 1980s. Even thought the project didn’t achieve the goal, it still attracted numerous artists coming to the village. At present, Jioufen is a renowned tourist attraction representative of Taiwan. It draws many tourists during the weekends to see the masterpieces of the artists. Even though it is not a real art village, it is still a place for the artists’ inspiration .
2. Summary of Our Project
During this interview with the local metal artist, Dar-Far, Hu, we tried to investigate the origin of the metal mosaic artworks and the process of the creation, and also to promote the principles of his creation. We wish to pass down the innovative art to the next generation. During the interview, Dar-Far, Hu demonstrated the process of his creation and let every member in the research group participate in the production and experience the fun of DIY.
3. Our Computer and Internet Access
A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:21-50%
B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:2-3
C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dial-up modem
D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6
E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):
The school provides T1 network with bandwidth of 1.5 M offered by Hinet ADSL as the resources structure for students. The 30 computers at the computer classroom for students offer online capability around the clock. Other equipment available includes two scanners and one network printer. Each student in the team has a computer at home to go online. They can search for information both at school and home.
4. Problems We Had To Overcome
(1) Inconvenient traffic transportation: There is quite a distance between the target area and our school, Ruei Fang Junior High School. It requires transportation, such as the local bus, to get to the destination. And we needed to get the students together to take the buses. (2) Insufficient experiences: During the interview, the contents of the interview from different students would be overlapped, and the topics might be not specific enough. With the explanation and demonstration from the teachers, we had a better idea about how to conduct a more successful interview. (3) Access to the original artworks: Some of the famous metal mosaic artworks have been sold or borrowed for the exhibition. We couldn’t get access to the original ones. Therefore, we presented the artworks by taking the photos from the published artwork collection album under the permission of Mr. Dar-Far, Hu.
5. Our Project Sound Bite
We visited Mr.Hu in Jioufen and interviewed him with a lot of questions about how to make the metal mosaics and finally had a better understanding about him. Dar-Far, Hu, 72, still keeps creating his artworks in order to present the original beauty of Jioufen. The materials which he used were the hardware like iron, aluminum or tin can. The unremarkable materials have become the spectacular landscape painting of Jioufen through Hu Dahua's magic hands. It is not an easy task to complete a metal mosaic because it might take a month or even several years. Even though Mr.Hu has never entered any art school to learn the techniques of the creation, he has always been passionate about art. He said that even though he might lose his eye sight as time goes by, he still wants to continue his creation until the day he dies. We learn a precious lesson from Mr. Hu and that is we have to be persistent about everything we are doing, insist on our dreams and overcome the obstacles to make the dreams come true.
6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
In Taiwan, the nine-year-consistency curriculum focuses on training students with humanism feelings, integration capability, native and international consciousness and life-long learning standard compensate the different research subjects in this Cyberfair Project. With Mr. Dar-Far Hu as our research target, we aim to train students with the capability which includes how to frame the plans, collect information, interview and make the webpage, etc. And we hope that students will experience the meaning of preservation of culture and research skills from this research through the presentation of the research results. We keep using the opportunities to help students search and integrate the information on their own and understand the connection between preservation of art and life and culture and further pay attention to changes around us in life.