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The 50th Anniversary Collection and History Special Exhibition of First Large-Scale Exhibition of Precious Historical Materials

It’s the 50th anniversary of the establishment of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Me-morial Hall, Ministry of Culture. To look back on the hall history and greet the bet-ter future, “The 50th Anniversary Collection Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall” and “The 50 Anniversary History Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall” are held. It is the first time for many pre-cious historical materials to be exhibited on a large scale. The joint opening ceremo-ny of the exhibitions was grandly held at Bo-ai Gallery of the hall today (May 12), hosted by Director-general Wang Lan-sheng and attended by Deputy Secretary-general Wang Yu-min of KMT, Architect Wang Shou-zheng, and several famous art-ists, Su Hsien-fa, Tu Chung-kao, and Hsueh Ping-nan.

     Director-general Wang Lan-sheng said all staff grow together with the national development and social pulses of Taiwan. The hall has preserved the precious histor-ical materials well in the past fifty years. They are systematically presented through the two exhibitions in the eve of the anniversary. The colleagues of the different di-visions have worked hard together for one year to organize the documents. He also expressed the gratitude to KMT Party History Institute for generously lending “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Handwritten Biography” and “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Grade Report of The College of Medicine for Chinese, Hong Kong.” The visitors can appreciate Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s relics at a close distance. All exhibits of the collection special exhibition have been upgraded to the collection website of Ministry of Culture. The interested citizens can scan the QR code to go on the website. Through situation simulation and time corridor, “The 50th Anniversary History Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall” displays the diverse perspectives of the hall, from the staff to the citizens, from ordinary days to special occasions, from architecture to culture, and from activities to exhibitions. The exhibition area of gender equality makes public the female employees’ endeavor for gender equality in the workplace and the legislative process of the “Act of Gender Equality in Employment” in Tai-wan for the first time. It also highlights the daily life of the female employees to break the barrier in the traditional workplace for males and upgrade the service qual-ity together with the male colleagues.

     Deputy Secretary-general Wang Yu-min expressed his approval of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall’s promoting Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s spirit through the diverse exhibitions. The winning work of Su Hsien-fa, the first-prize winner of the oil painting group in the first National Youth Calligraphy and Painting Competition organized by National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, has been collected by the hall since 1973. He regards the collection system of the hall as the epitome of the modern fine arts history in Taiwan.

      “The 50th Anniversary Collection Special Exhibition” is generally divided into four major subjects: “Art as Propaganda: Chungshan Theory and Collected Callig-raphy and Painting,” “Art Heritage: Senior Painters’ Artworks,” “Glory of Chungshan: Chungshan Art and Literature Award Winners’ Works” and “Future Prospect: Selection of Competition Winning Works and Hall Collections.” The great work “Pine and Cypress in Spring,” co-painted by 12 masters such as Zhang Da-qian and Huang Jun-bi, the famous works by Chiang Chao-shen, Liu Kuo-sung, Ou Hao-nien, Zhou Cheng, Lee Yih-hong, Liao Shiou-ping, Huang Kuang-nan, Ho Chau-chu, and Su Hsien-fa, and the authentic calligraphy works of the celebri-ties such as Hu Han-min, one of “the four major calligraphers of Minguo” are all included. The collection special exhibition openly displays the five precious cal-ligraphy works by Dr. Sun Yat-sen: “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Handwritten Biography” and “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Grade Report of The College of Medicine for Chinese, Hong Kong,” collected by KMT Party History Institute, and the “Three Treasures of the Hall” including the “Letter to James Cantlie” written in English and the authen-tic calligraphy works, “The World for All People” and “Fraternity.”

     “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Handwritten Biography” was written by Dr. Sun Yat-sen in October, 1896. After he was kidnapped in London, his fame spread far and wide. Recognized as the revolutionary leader in China with huge influence, he was invit-ed by Prof. Herbert Giles of the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom to write the autobiography to explain his revolutionary contention and plan. He intro-duces himself in the work: “My name is Sun Wen, with the courtesy name Zai-zhi and pseudonym Yat-sen. I was born on October 16, 1866, in Xiangshan County, Guangzhou Prefecture, Guangdong. I studied Confucian classics in my childhood and completed the studies at the age of twelve. When I was thirteen, I went to Ha-waiian Islands with my mother. That was my first time to see the wonder of steam-ships and the broadness of the world. Therefore, I wish to learn from the west and seek for the infinite truth.” Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s courtesy name has the meaning of “writings for conveying truth.” The latter four sentences are in the antithetical cou-plet, indicating his emphasis on the rhetoric of Chinese literature.

     “Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s Grade Report of The College of Medicine for Chinese, Hong Kong” clearly shows his outstanding performance and top rank when study-ing in The College of Medicine for Chinese, Hong Kong, from January, 1887, to July, 1892. The subjects such as botany, chemistry, orthopedic anatomy, general anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, pathology, forensic medicine, public health, and midwifery are ranked “excellent,” and the subjects of medicine and surgery are ranked “pass” with the remarks of “with great distinction.” He can be regarded as a “straight A student” from the modern point of view.

     The handwritten English manuscript, “Letter to James Cantlie,” is the proof to the sincere teacher-student relationship between Dr. Sun Yat-sen and James Cantlie. It is the first handwritten calligraphy work of Dr. Sun Yat-sen collected by National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall after its establishment as well as a precious piece of work in modern history. On March 12, 1993, when Prof. James Cantlie’s great grandson, Charles Cantlie, came to Taiwan to call on the then president, Mr. Lee Teng-hui, he donated the letter to Taiwan. Afterwards, the Office of President sent the handwritten calligraphy work to National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall and it became the extremely precious first collection of the hall. Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s calligra-phy work with the historical meaning and value, “The World for All People,” was given to Lu Kuang-wen (1892-1964) after the revolt against Qing Dynasty and the establishment of the ROC to praise his contribution to Gaozhou Uprising and assis-tance in establishing the Guangzhou governor’s office. On December 31, 2011, the calligraphy work was handed by Prof. Lu Ching-wu, the son of Lu Kuang-wen, to the hall for collection. Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s eldest son, Sun Ke, Huang Ji-lu, Chen li-fu, and Chang Chi-yun all wrote inscriptions on the work. The calligraphy work, “Fraternity,” is a witness to Dr. Sun Yat-sen’s friendship with the Japanese friend during revolution. The original owner, Prof. Masao Matsumoto gave it to the direc-tor of Japan Art News Agency, Mr. Susumu Kayahara (Prof. Matsumoto’s student). Mr. Susumu Kayahara donated it to the hall for collection on March 12, 2009.

     “The 50th Anniversary History Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall” is designed from the citizens’ angle and generally chronologically divided into the five categories: “The Birth of the Classic Architecture,” “The Ordi-nary and Extraordinary of Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall,” “The Image Representation and Thinking Trace of Dr. Sun Yat-sen,” “The Inclusiveness of the Auditorium,” and “The Shared Future of You and Me.” Besides, the two corridors “Find the Dev-il Details of the Architecture” and “Your Wall of Golden Awards” extending from the past to the future display the splendid activities the public have participated in at the hall and record the precious memory of the citizens’ social life. The Chinese ex-hibition title, “Wu Shi Er Li” has the spirit of inheriting the past and ushering in the future. The English exhibition title, “Starting at 50,” also carries the similar pro-found meaning: The hall will keep moving toward hundred years. When the largest renovation of the facilities since opening is under way, the hall will transform the past memories into new life.

     The history specially exhibition openly exhibits the documents of the 57 fe-male employees’ petition for gender equality in the workplace in August, 1987. In those years, the “restrictive pregnancy” and “single” clauses were common in the society. In the hall’s definition, the employees had to “keep the dignified appearance and act energetically.” Those who were pregnant or over thirty should resign. The endeavor for institutional gender equality and the right to work was all the rage in the society. Supported by the women’s groups, they launched the protest, convened the press conference, and drew up the law as the important promoters of the “Act of Gender Equality in Employment” in 2002. Besides the oral history film of the per-sons involved and the diverse exhibits such as the coverage of TTV News and Awakening to piece together the incident, the gender equality area of the exhibition highlights the female employees’ daily life in the traditional male-oriented work-place and the creativity the senior male and female workers present in the volunteer group where gender imbalance is common through the interviews in the film.

     The celebration ceremony of the 50th anniversary will be held at the hall at 11AM on May 14. We invite the public to celebrate the anniversary together. There will be two “gift-giving” activities including “The Book-Giving Activity” and “The 50th Anniversary Limited Souvenir Giving for FB Posts with Photos.” Welcome to witness the special moment of the hall history. It is expected that the stage for all people will extend the shared memory in the future together after the renovation of the cultural construction.

“The 50th Anniversary Collection Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall” and “The 50 Anniversary History Special Exhibition of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall”
Date: From today to June 13
Place: Bo-ai Gallery, Wen-hua Gallery, and Culture Corridors 1F, 2F of National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall
Organizer: National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall
Official Website:
Tel: (02)27588008, ext. 545, 546