從肅穆到狂飆

全民的總統府
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2019 / 8月

文‧鄧慧純 圖‧林旻萱


時光荏苒,2019年,總統府迎來百歲的生日。曾經它是台灣本島最高的建築物,至今它仍是不可動搖的政治權力中樞,它讓人屏息立正的氣息仍在,卻悄悄地多了一份可親近性。


座落在台北市重慶南路一段122號的總統府,從空中俯瞰,主體平面呈日字型,結構穩固。立面紅白相間的橫帶裝飾,帶著華麗感,在藍天的映襯下,是台北街頭不可錯過的美麗風景。

百年建築的身世

總統府的使用方式雖然不到一百種,功能與身分卻已經多次變化。

前身是日本時代的總督府,曾為台灣博覽會的會場,亦有短暫時間做為行政院辦公廳使用,它曾長時間被稱作介壽館,1998年被賦予國定古蹟身分,2006年更名為總統府,它佇立在凱達格蘭大道的盡頭已有百年了。

完工於1919年,這棟建築營造過程中故事亦不少。1907年總督府宣布總督府廳舍設計將以公開競圖的方式徵選,這在台灣、日本都是史無前例。來自世界各地的日籍建築師熱烈響應,結果卻是一等獎從缺,由設計師長野宇平治獲得二等獎,但設計圖由建築師森山松之助帶回東京,幾經討論之後,略做修改,塔樓從六層樓拉到11層樓高,高度達60公尺,增添權威感,也成了今日總統府的樣貌。

建築的佚事不僅於此,服務於國立台灣博物館,人稱「文資傑尼斯」的學者凌宗魁點出,耐人尋味的是總統府的紅磚立面。他列舉當時各國在東南亞殖民地的總督府,如英國在印度德里、法國在胡志明及河內等地的官方建築,多數都是石頭外觀,而台灣的總統府卻是紅磚疊砌的表情(內為鋼筋水混泥土結構)。

「石頭在西洋的建築中是永恆的代表,磚造的表情是非常商業性,是非常工業革命的。」凌宗魁說。根據最初競圖的紀錄,長野宇平治提出的設計案還是石造外牆,在森山松之助帶回東京討論修改後,成了今日總統府的磚造樣貌。背後因素至今已無從可考,但也留給後人許多詮釋空間與想像。

結構上,當時日本已統治台灣十多年,第一批日造的廳舍建築因台灣多颱風、地震的氣候風土,多數已頹圮傾倒或遭蛀蝕腐朽。有鑑於此,總督府的建築地基特別加強結構的牢固,凌宗魁解釋。建築圖也依據委員的建議,在廳舍四角設計八角形牆體,用以強固結構。這些空間昔日作為「喫菸室」使用,現改為公務空間,小英總統昔日擔任國安會諮詢委員在總統府工作時,辦公室就在其中一間八角亭,她在IG分享了一張八角形的天花板,格外典雅別緻。

總統府強固的結構,讓它挺過1945年台北大空襲,儘管正面左側嚴重損毀,但未傷及建築主體。在修復後,繼續挺立,作為台灣政治權力中樞的地位不變。

人民心中的總統府

作為權力中樞的總統府,在台灣人的記憶中是怎麼樣的存在呢?

你或許曾是國慶慶典上排字表演的一員;或曾是閱兵中整齊劃一踢著正步的一位;或是在儀典中,帥氣地操槍表演的樂儀隊;或曾經不小心騎摩托車上了凱達格蘭大道,被憲兵攔阻的騎士;或經過總統府前被要求快速通過的行人;或是跨完年狂樂一晚後,趕赴升旗的年輕人。

318學運時,在總統府服役駐守的《光華》同仁亨利,曾睡在府內一樓敞廳,地板很硬,裝備當枕頭,不好睡,是他給的評語。

老台北人莊永明曾為文,「我七歲就跟著父親登堂入室進了『總統府』,當時它並不是最高行政機關,而是1948年『台灣博覽會』的會場。」到了初中,「走向這棟建築,雖然沒有望而卻步的感覺,但是總認為它不親切。」

中華文化復興總會副秘書長李厚慶從小家住在總統府後面(長沙街),他記憶小學時,每逢十月國慶,會有部隊進駐學校練習,孩子們就能換來數天的假期。

解放威權空間,運動狂飆的年代

在長一輩人的記憶裡,總統府總是肅穆而有距離感的。但隨著社會開放、世局轉變,總統府周邊開始了一場場的抗爭與社會運動。李厚慶記憶,他的初中「是個『街頭狂飆』的年代,這周邊常常圍起來,甚至從中華路就走不進來了,那是一個國家權力跟人民碰撞的時期。」

各式的社會溝通在這邊發生,各公民團體利用凱道為發聲廣場,與政府對話、展現訴求,舉凡原住民權益、農民運動、能源、環保、教育、司法改革、反媒體壟斷、年金改革等議題,不管是溫柔的、粗暴的,從那些年持續到這些年,對話不曾停止,也都是社會往前進的足跡。

那幾年,有關當局也嘗試解放空間。猶記得1994年12月的《光華》雜誌,封面故事報導「總統府開大門」,迎接民眾入內參觀。自那時起,總統府便一直敞開大門,如今已近四分之一個世紀。1996年,當時的介壽路改名為凱達格蘭大道,為記憶此地曾是凱達格蘭族的傳統領域。凌宗魁記憶猶新的憶起陳水扁台北市長任內,提出的府前廣場設計的國際競圖,都意圖在解放此空間的威權性。

府外的社會運動沸沸揚揚,府內除了數次的局部修復外,2005年,前總統陳水扁委請林曼麗教授進行內部空間改造,以台灣本土特色美學為主,改造三間會客室為「台灣晴廳」、「台灣綠廳」、「台灣虹廳」。「台灣晴廳」以象徵海洋的藍色波紋地毯,搭配台灣達悟族菱形織紋的窗簾。「台灣綠廳」以書法家陳雲程的墨寶「觀天下」裝飾為主要牆面,地毯名為「百福地」,將台灣特有物種如藍腹鷴、台灣百合、一葉蘭、油點草編織入圖。「台灣虹廳」則以國寶畫家林惺嶽的大幅創作「國鳥駕到」、「天佑花蓮」,佔據觀者的視覺,都讓台灣在地的元素能在總統接待外賓訪客時,成為他們對寶島的記憶。

全民的總統府

「『人民的總統府』不能用講的,要有做的行動。要人民走得進來,才有感覺。」總統府發言人林鶴明說。

從寶慶路和博愛路交界的三號門,走進總統府,大大的「府」字印入眼簾,細讀策展人寫的文字,「『府』字拆解後,下面的『付』蘊含『人民託付』之意念,強調總統的權力來自於人民,總統府則是乘載人民託付與期望的建築。」開宗明義地宣示「人民的總統府」。

搭配「府──POWER TO THE PEOPLE」常設展,建築百年「府100」以數字100做發展,「兩個圈圈,從建築的窗戶發展而來,也代表眼睛,1代表人,所以策展的概念就是透過人的眼睛去看總統府建築百年這件事情。」李厚慶說。

建築百年特展的亮點,除了象徵每個人都可以用自已的角度詮釋你所認知的總統府攝影比賽外,也集結台灣百年來的重要影像。巧心設計的是,在充滿歷史照片的空間中,策展人安置了幾座模擬總統府外牆的拱廊門窗,再呼應策展的概念,林鶴明解釋。

入府的訪客除了台灣人外,也歡迎外國友人。所以展場的空間交夾著中文、日文、英文的導覽聲線。新加坡、馬來西亞這些鄰近的東南亞國家對台灣或許有些熟悉,或許聽過歷任總統的名字,卻不盡然了解台灣一路的民主歷程,看著志工站在歷史照片前面,為訪客解說台灣的全民健保成果、運動選手在體育場上的競技英姿、社會運動的進程等,觀察外國友人對台灣進步開放稱奇的反應,跟在一旁的我們,除了細數台灣這一路歷史與自身的生命記憶串聯,從心底也油然升起身為台灣人的自信。

常設展中「府──聲音」尤是令人感動的一個角落。台灣社會從威權逐步走向開放民主,是許多前輩先進衝撞體制、流血流汗的成果。這個角落匯集了社會的各種聲音,人民的訴求透過集結的力量,被當政者聽見。

而今年四月的府前音樂會,是另一種聲音的集合。

李厚慶回憶,除了1995年當時,陳水扁市長開放府前廣場給年輕人飆舞外,今年的音樂會大概是最靠近總統府的一次,而且首度開放民眾自由入場。

節目內容亦是百年一見的組合,很多新的創意、跨界的合作都在這場音樂會中玩起來。活動邀集了古典的、流行的、獨立音樂、客家、原住民、閩南等音樂類型,試著讓不同的元素混合、跨界,納入了台灣各式的音樂形式。而將台灣廟會、藝陣音樂元素重新揉合的獨立音樂團體「三牲獻藝」和原民歌手桑布伊站上了總統府車廳上的平台,這是以前老總統閱兵向民眾致意的所在,如今標示台灣在地的音樂表演站上了同樣的地方,別具意義,李厚慶表示。

「台灣一直以來以製造業被世界認識,近年來,像王建民、李安、戴資穎等各領域的傑出表現,讓台灣被世界看到。這場音樂會集結了台灣的多元文化,把台灣的文化展演實力呈現出來,那是更細緻的國力。」林鶴明總結地說。

五月下旬,小英總統親自代言,邀請外國友人來總統府住一晚。參考自澳洲大堡礁尋找島主的創意,但這可是全球總統府的首開先例,歡迎國際友人來提案如何體驗總統府。台灣人的熱情好客大家都有耳聞,晚上住宿的安全當然更不用掛心。李厚慶說:「這是一個讓世界看到台灣的好方法。」

還記得我們民選出來的首位女總統嗎?還記得五月,凱道上席開百桌的同婚宴嗎?這幾年,台灣在國際社會被看見的頻率激增,被討論的面向更多元。我們該更有自信,跟世界做朋友。希望這幢負載著台灣的記憶,見證了許多歷史現場,矗立於從介壽路脫胎的凱達格蘭大道,巍巍而立的總統府建築,隨著時光越加自在,在台灣的陽光注視下,陪著人民走出自己的路來。

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EN

From Austerity to Exuberance

The People's Presidential Office Building

Cathy Teng /photos courtesy of Lin Min-hsuan /tr. by Robert Fox

Time flies. In 2019, the Presidential Office Building celebrated its hundredth birthday. Once the tallest building on the island of Taiwan, and still the unshakeable center of political power today, the structure continues to inspire awe. In recent times, it has quietly acquired an added sense of intimacy.

 


Located at No. 122 Chongqing South Road Section 1 in Taipei City, the Presidential Office Building, its façade decorated with horizontal bands of red and white, projects an aura of resplendence. Against a backdrop of blue sky, it’s a must-see scenic spot on the streets of Taipei.

A century-old structure

During the period of Japanese rule, the building served as the governor-general’s headquarters, as well as the site of 1935’s Taiwan Exposition, which marked the first 40 years of Japanese governance. It later temporarily housed the offices of the Executive Yuan, and was long known as Chieh Shou Hall, a tribute to former president Chiang Kai-shek. Designated as a national monument in 1998, it was renamed as the Presidential Office Building in 2006. The structure is situated at the end of today’s Ketagalan Boulevard, a space it has occupied for the past hundred years.

The building was completed in 1919, and there are more than a few stories regarding its construction. In 1907, the Governor-General’s Office announced that a building design would be selected through open com­peti­tion, a first in both Taiwan and Japan. Japanese designer ­Uheiji Na­gano won second prize, but architect Matsu­no­suke Mori­yama took the plan back to Tokyo, where it was slightly modified, increasing the height of the tower from six to 11 stories. The revisions added to the building’s air of authority, giving it the appearance that it has today.

But that’s not all. According to Ling Zongkui, a cultural resources scholar at the National Taiwan Museum, the building’s façade is noteworthy as well. At the time of its construction, Ling says, colonial administrative head­quarters in Southeast-Asian countries often had stone exteriors. But the Taiwan Governor-­General’s Office boasted a red brickwork façade (on a steel-reinforced concrete structure).

“In Western architecture, stone represents eternity, while brickwork is very commercial, very much of the Industrial Revolution,” Ling says. According to Na­gano’s original design, the outer walls were to be made of stone. However, Mori­yama revised the plan to look like it does today. While we don’t know what lay behind the change, it left later generations a good deal of interpretive and imaginative space.

Structurally, to withstand Taiwan’s frequent typhoons and earthquakes, the building’s foundations are exceptionally sturdy, says Ling. According to committee recommenda­tions, the design included octagonal chambers at each of the building’s four interior corners as a means of fortifying the structure. Used as smoking rooms in the past, the spaces have since been converted to ­offices.

Thanks to its firm foundations, the Presidential Office Building survived the massive May 1945 Allied bombing raid on Taipei. Although parts of the building suffered significant damage, the structure as a whole proved sound. Following repairs, it continued to stand tall, its position at the heart of political power in Taiwan unchanged.

Closer to the people

As the center of political power in Taiwan, how does the Presidential Office Building exist in the memories of the Taiwanese people?

Perhaps you marched close-order in a military review; or performed ceremonial drills in a marching band; or maybe you carelessly rode your motor scooter up Chieh Shou Road—today’s Ketagalan Boulevard—only to be flagged down by a military policeman.

A Taiwan Panorama colleague who as an MP stood guard at the Presidential Office Building during 2014’s Sunflower Student Movement, spent nights in the building’s first-floor atrium. The hard floor and a kit bag for a pillow made for poor sleeping, he says, his only criticism.

Longtime Tai­pei resident ­Zhuang Yong­ming wrote, “Walking toward the building, I was never intimidated, but never thought fondly of it either.”

Lee Hou ­Ching, deputy secretary-general of the General Association of Chinese Culture, grew up on Chang­sha St., behind the Presidential Office Building. When he was in elementary school, he recalls, as the October 10 National Day approached each year, a troop of soldiers would bivouac on the school grounds and conduct drills. As a trade-off, the students enjoyed several days’ va­cation from classes.

Burgeoning social activism 

In older citizens’ memories, the Presidential Office Building was solemn and forbidding. After the lifting of martial law and the social liberalization that followed, however, times changed, and the area surrounding the building became a scene of mass protests and a locus of social movements. “That was an era when everyone took to the streets,” Lee Hou Ching remembers, “a time when national authority collided with the people.”

Social communication of all kinds took place here; various public groups used Ketagalan Blvd. as a venue for voicing concerns on issues such as Aboriginal people’s rights, farmers’ welfare, energy, environmental issues, educational and legal reform, opposition to media monopolies, and pension reform. Since then, the dialogue has never ceased, a sign of social progress.

In the 1990s, the authorities began to ease restrictions on the space. The December 1994 Taiwan Panorama cover story proclaimed “The Presidential Palace Opens Its Doors,” an invitation to citizens to tour the building. In 1996, Chieh Shou Rd. was renamed Ketagalan Blvd., a memorial to the Ketagalan people, the indigenous group that traditionally inhabited the area. 

Outside the building, social movements were in full swing. Inside, in addition to several partial renovations, then-president Chen Shui-bian asked Professor Lin Mun-lee to redecorate with a focus on native ­Taiwanese aesthetics, integrating ocean themes, Aboriginal motifs, Taiwanese endemic flora and fauna, and works by calligrapher Chen Yuncheng and painter Lin Xing­yue. The three redecorated reception rooms have been dubbed “Taiwan Sunshine Hall,” “Taiwan Green Hall,” and “Taiwan Rainbow Hall.” When the president receives inter­national visitors, each element of the native Taiwan­ese decor will shape foreign friends’ memories of our treasured island nation.

The people’s Presidential Office Building

After entering the Presidential Office Building from Gate No. 3, at the intersection of Baoqing Rd. and Bo’ai Rd., one sees a very large Chinese character: fu (府). As the exhibition text explains, one component of the logo­graph is 付 (likewise pronounced fu), which can be interpreted to mean “entrusted by the people,” emphasizing that presidential power comes from the citizenry. Thus the Presidential Office Building embodies the people’s trust and expectations—it is, as the exhibition’s theme declares, “the People’s Presidential Office Building.”

The Presidential Office Building 100th Anniversary Special Exhibition, themed “Fu 100,” is an extension of the permanent exhibit, “Power to the People.” The number “100” represents the building’s hundred-year history, while the zeros stand for “two circles, or ‘eyes’ and ‘1’ symbolizes the people,” explains Lee Hou ­Ching. “The idea is to show the Presidential Office Building as seen through the eyes of the people.”

The highlights of the exhibition include not only works selected from a photography contest, symbolizing that everyone can interpret the Presidential Office Building according to their own perceptions, but also a collection of photographs from the past hundred years. In the space filled with the historical photos, curators have ingeniously installed several arched porticos, modeled on those that grace the building’s outer walls, echoing the exhibition’s theme, according to Presidential Office spokesperson Sydney Lin.

Taiwanese citizens and international friends alike are welcome to visit, and volunteers provide introductions to the exhibits in Mandarin, Japanese, and English. Those from neighboring Southeast-Asian countries may be somewhat familiar with Taiwan, or may have heard the names of its presidents, but might not be completely acquainted with the nation’s path to democracy. Watching the volunteers recount the achievements of Taiwan’s National Health Insurance system, Taiwanese athletes’ successes in international competitions, and the course of various social movements, we see foreign friends’ astonished reactions to Taiwan’s progress and liberalization. Standing to one side, in addition to recalling this part of Taiwan’s history and its interconnections with our own life memories, we can’t help but feel a rising sense of confidence in being Taiwanese.

One section of the permanent exhibition includes an especially moving feature, “The People,” an assembly of Taiwanese voices from every sector of society. The power of citizens’ collective appeals ensures that those in govern­ment will hear them.

A concert held in April of this year in front of the Presidential Office Building featured another kind of collective voice.

The program included a once-in-a-century gathering of classical, popular, indie, Hakka, indigenous, and Hoklo musicians, all taking part in the concert. Sam-seng-hiàn-gē, a Taiwan indie group whose sound blends musical elements drawn from temple festivals and religious processions, and Aboriginal singer Sangpuy, performed on a platform atop the Presidential Office Building’s porte-cochère, from where President ­Chiang Kai-shek once reviewed military parades and addressed the nation. It is especially significant that local musicians now stand in the same place, Lee Hou ­Ching says.

“Taiwan has always been known to the world for manufacturing. The concert brought together Taiwan’s pluralistic culture and showcased the strength of Taiwan’s cultural presentations. This is a more refined expression of national strength,” says Sydney Lin.

At the end of May, President Tsai Ing-wen personally welcomed international visitors to spend a night in the Presidential Office Building, inviting them to offer suggestions on how to experience the edifice. The move was unprecedented in any presidential mansion anywhere in the world: “This is a good way of letting the world see Taiwan,” Lee Hou Ching says.

Do you remember when we elected our first female president? And do you remember the hundred-table wedding banquet on Ketagalan Blvd. celebrating same-sex marriages? In recent years, Taiwan’s international visibility has risen dramatically, and discussions of its future directions are increasingly diverse. We should have more confidence in ourselves, and make friends with the world. The Presidential Office Building, bearer of Taiwan’s memories and witness to so much of its history, still stands tall and proud. As time passes, we hope that it will become even more approachable, and, under the Taiwan sun, accompany the people on their chosen paths.

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