Interbreeding Field is a Taiwanese educational program that creates provocative installations in and about public space. Public space is contested in Taiwan, as it is in most places, and Interbreeding field uses its work to make commentary about how a space should or could be used.
Interbreeding Field operates much like the U.S. Rural Studio at Auburn University, with a focus more on public space than housing or social services. Students are brought in to help explore and design a particular project – first understanding the social and philosophical grounding which makes that project necessary. The students stay on and are tasked with executing the projects, which can range from the practical (e.g., a bridge) to the fanciful (e.g. an installation).
The biological notion of ‘interbreeding’ becomes the basis for their work. In biological terms, interbreeding creates future generations with qualities absent in the parent generation. At a metaphorical level, that is what Interbreeding Field seeks to accomplish. The ‘fields’ in this case, can be social, historical, physical, etc. It is only by grafting these fields together can we generate new ideas of public space. For example, in one project, the studio built a park on a scaffold over a parking lot, drawing attention to a particular social problem which we all experience: we have designed our cities for cars, not people. The project is overlaying ‘fields’ in a literal and a metaphorical sense.
Their work has encompassed public space in all forms, from benches to museum exhibitions, all of which look to explore how new spaces can be created by overlapping the ‘fields’ we already know.