Chinese New Year Festival at the Smithsonian American Art Museum: Highlighting the GW Confucius Institute

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On January 28, 2017, The Smithsonian American Art Museum was abuzz with parents and children from the DC community, a thrilling lion dance performance, as well as a special visit from the Honorable Chinese Ambassador to the United States, CUI Tiankai. Ambassador CUI opened the day’s festivities, having the honor of dotting the eyes to awaken the lion. This year marks the 3rd time that the GW Confucius Institute has joined Smithsonian American Art Museum for the Chinese New Year Festival.

The Secretary of the Smithsonian Institute, David J. Skorton, partook in the celebration to wish everyone a blessed new year. Local Chinese artists, displaying their talents, crafts, and skill filled the Kogod Courtyard with their hand-made art and colorful decorations. The GW Confucius Institute demonstrated calligraphy, which became a must-see activity during the event. Ambassador Cui visited the GW Confucius Institute’s station, offering recognition for the work they do and the interactive activities they had prepared for the event. Secretary Skorton also visited in station and offered his new year wishes to the GW Confucius Institute. 

After the celebration began, the GW Confucius Institute’s booth became quite popular. GW volunteers expertly decorated New Year’s greeting in calligraphy on special paper and over 300 lanterns. For the children, GW Confucius Institute also offered coloring activities, where the kids could color in the roosters for the Year of the Rooster. The line for calligraphy continued to grow throughout the day, but the volunteers remained patient and cheerful, ensuring everyone received their calligraphy sample and new year greeting.
One child about five or six years old asked the volunteers, “Could you help me write the character for spring?”
One father asked his young son, “What do you want written on the lantern?” The boy replied, “how about loyalty?”
A elderly grandmother measuredly approached the table, requesting that the lanterns for her two grandchildren read a simple “happiness.”
Every attendee left the calligraphy table with a smile on their face and satisfaction in their hearts for the new year. During the event, the GW Confucius Institute calligraphers painted continuously, decorating hundreds of lanterns and papers nonstop. The day’s event surpassed previous attendance records with over 7,500 people attending the celebration.

In addition to the calligraphers, the GW Confucius Institute also had student volunteers work with the local Chinese artists and artisans by providing invaluable Chinese-English interpretation for attendees who wanted to further their understanding of the traditional Chinese handicrafts. All volunteers proudly wore their cerulean blue T-shirts, which became an emblem of unity and charity during the celebration and received countless comments of praise and admiration.


乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院展现文化风采, 成华盛顿春节家庭日活动亮点

当地时间2017年1月28日上午11时,美国国家艺术馆内庭锣鼓喧天,人声鼎沸,中国驻美国大使馆主办的欢庆春节家庭日活动在喜庆的气氛中开幕。家庭日活动看点多多。金鸡报春,舞狮纳福。崔天凯大使亲临现场为醒狮点睛;美国史密森纳博物馆秘书长大卫·J·斯考滕(David J. Skorton)到场表示庆贺;来自北京的中国民间艺术家的精湛艺术展示令观众叹为观止。除此之外,乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院所展现出的文化风采也成为现场一大看点。崔天凯大使来到孔院展台充分肯定孔院的活动内容。大卫·J·斯考滕秘书长则饶有趣味地前来孔院展台逐个了解孔院为家庭日活动奉上的庆祝节目。

乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院已连续第三年亮相中国驻美使馆在史密森纳博物馆举办的欢庆春节家庭日活动。乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院带来的中国书法等文化展示活动已经成为年度春节庆典的保留节目。

家庭日活动一开始,乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院展位前便人头攒动。学院为家庭日活动精心准备了一系列节目,有鸡年主题的儿童画、手工互动、中国书法送春联、送灯笼等。在书法展台前,观众自发地排起长长的队伍,只为能够收到孔子学院志愿者亲笔书写的春联和彩色灯笼。志愿者们耐心询问观众的心愿,笔走龙蛇,在红纸或灯笼上写下新春祝福。

一个五六岁的小女孩怯生生地问志愿者:“你能帮我写‘春’吗?”

一个年轻的父亲问他大约六七岁的儿子:“你想要在灯笼上写什么?”男孩转头问志愿者:“你能写‘忠诚’吗?”

轮到一位白发老太太时,她颤巍巍走上前,请求为她的两个孙子在灯笼上书写“幸福”。

每一位观众手捧春联离开展位时脸上都带着满意的笑容。家庭日活动期间,孔子学院书法志愿者们几乎未曾停笔,一直在写,当天为观众书写祝福灯笼超过300个,送出的春联则难以计数。据统计,当天本场家庭日活动的参与者人数多达超历史的7500人。

乔治·华盛顿大学孔子学院除了通过中国书法展现传统文化风采,还派出志愿者来到家庭日活动各个展台为观众和国内艺术家提供语言翻译服务。身穿孔院蓝色文化衫的志愿者们活跃在家庭日活动各个展台前,成为当日家庭日活动一道亮丽的风景。

 

Sponsored By:

The Smithsonian American Art Museum
The Chinese Embassy Cultural Attaché
The GW Confucius Institute

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