The Ministry of Culture has announced that Tsai Ming-liang (蔡明亮), Liu Kuo-sung (劉國松), and Cheng Shan-hsi (鄭善禧) will be honored with the most prestigious cultural award in Taiwan.
The three winners of the 36th National Cultural Award have stellar achievements in the field of filming and painting. Moreover, they have made significant contributions to Taiwan’s art scene and have enriched Taiwan’s culture.
Born in Malaysia, Tsai is an award-winning filmmaker who has been based in Taiwan since he studied theater arts at Taipei’s Chinese Culture University. Tsai is known for his detailed portrayal of characters and lives in modern society, and his films embody avant-garde values and cinematic techniques.
Tsai rose to fame by winning the Golden Lion for “Vive L’Amour (愛情萬歲)” at the Venice Film Festival in 1994. Other films such as “The River (河流),” “The Hole (洞),” “What Time Is It There (你那邊幾點),” and “The Wayward Cloud (天邊一朵雲)” have also won significant international recognition and accolades.
Liu, who is known as the “Father of Modern Ink Painting,” is a pioneering artist who spearheaded the modern painting movement in post-war Taiwan. His lifelong pursuit of arts and devotion to ink painting made him the first painter from the Chinese-speaking community to be named a foreign honorary member by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Liu formed the Fifth Moon Group (五月畫會) after finishing studying fine arts at the National Taiwan Normal University in 1956, and the group has since developed and experimented with new approaches to art. Liu’s unique ideas have ushered ink painting into a new era.
Cheng is a versatile painter whose works are influenced by folk art and western paintings. He incorporates Chinese folk culture with classic art techniques, creating unique paintings full of personality. Cheng has also perfected porcelain painting by creating works that express Taiwanese grassroots sensibilities.
Laureate selection of the annual National Cultural Award undergoes a strict selection process. The eligible candidates require written consent and approval from three members of the Board before being reviewed by the Awards Committee. After being approved by three-fourth of the Committee, in which over two thirds of its members must be present, the finalists will be selected by the Premier.
Tsai, Liu, and Cheng will each receive a medallion, certificate, and NT$1 million at the 36th National Cultural Award ceremony this March.