Dragon brings its culture to Capital
The Chinese dragon is on a visit. The India International Rural Cultural Centre (IRCEN), is exhibiting sixty photographs provided by the embassy of the People’s Republic of China, depicting the changing cultural scenario there. The show, inaugurated by Zhang Zhihong, the Chinese Cultural Counsellor, is on till the end of the month.
Director Projects, IRCEN, Paulami Guha, informs, “IRCEN was established in 1979 by a group of prominent individuals like YV Chandrachud, former Chief Justice and IRCEN’s first president. Our aim has always been to promote India’s culture in foreign countries and in turn, introduce their culture to our countrymen.
“Over the years, we have had cultural exchanges with several countries like Russia, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Japan, Turkey, US, UK etc. and we were recently approached by China to exhibit this magnificent collection of photographs.”
These pictures, taken during various events in China in the past one decade, trace the evolution of arts and culture there. For example, there is a picture of a fashion show taking place on the Great Wall of China as the ramp!
Then there is another picture of folk stories of China being retold through modern musical extravaganzas. There are also shots of the opening ceremony of Olympics in Beijing which had a perfect blend of Chinese classical and contemporary dances – perfectly combining old and the new.
Then, pictures of culture in rural China have also been included. Artistes there are bound to perform in villages at least once a week by government rules. So there are shots of pole balancing shows in the backdrop of rural landscapes, traditional rural theatre as well as devotional dances in villages.
It appears as though through this exhibit, the communist country is also trying to convey that it is making efforts to preserve the culture of its minority communities. A photograph of a Tibetan monk creating an ancient Thangka painting in the background of a Tibetan temple has also been included.
Lastly, there are pictures of cultural exchanges between China and other countries. The exhibit includes a picture of the renowned music composer Zubin Mehta giving an interview to the Chinese press; Fan Dance artistes of South Korea performing in China; Norwegian musicians teaching Chinese students how to play the Bagpipe and Chinese youth performing martial arts in Japan to celebrate the 40th anniversary of normalization of Sino-Japanese relations.
Paulomi adds, “These photographs depict the soft side of superpower China. Delhiites must visit it for an educative and enriching experience.”
The exhibition is on till September 29, 11 am - 3 pm, at IRCEN Bhavan, Vasant Kunj.