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NCKU Hosts American Diplomat’s Photography Exhibition

Through the keen eyes of an American diplomat, Gary Oba captured Taiwan’s scenic treasures and met the island’s unique inhabitants with a simple digital camera. His exceptional diplomatic skills are manifest in the pictures which are currently showcased in the photography exhibition at the Art Center of National Cheng Kung University (NCKU), Tainan, Taiwan.

The exhibition, “Pedaling for Pictures: An American Diplomat’s Sojourn in Southern Taiwan” displays 80 photos selected from the thousands of photos Oba has shot during the past 2 years.

“The photographs reflected my feelings for Taiwan,” said Oba who is residing in Kaohsiung for over 2 years as the Branch Chief of the Kaohsiung Office of the American Institute in Taiwan.

He also said, “The deepest feeling I have is that Taiwan is a beautiful place with so many wonderful people and I think the beauty of the island is reflected in the personalities of the people.”

Oba spent many weekends and holidays exploring Taiwan by bicycle and starting with day trips to locations in Kaohsiung, Pingtung, and Tainan. His riding eventually took him around the entire island.

“Even though Taiwan is a small island, it has a lot of variety from mountains to oceans and everything in between, and so many different kinds of beauty,” according to Oba.

With the lens of his camera, Oba captured temple festivals, seasonal changes and even Taiwan’s food culture, highlighting the charm of folk and religious activities in Taiwan.

He said, “I think one of the things Taiwan’s residents enjoy but maybe not all the time aware of is how pretty Taiwan is.”

“For me, the picture is not always about the image but also about the feeling,” said Oba, “and what I encourage the viewers to do is to be in the moment and feel the feeling of being in the moment.”

Oba also shared his own philosophy of life which is “Wherever you’re at, at that time should be your favorite spot,” and he said, “you should have a good experience all the time at least that’s what I try to do.”

Come follow Oba’s footstep and uncover the beauty of Taiwan as you visit the Art Center, NCKU, where the exhibition will run through February 25.

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