China's Intangible Cultural Heritage Displayed at Beijing Expo 2019

Source: China IP News

"I was surprised and proud of Ningbo when I watched Ninghai playing teeth and Fenghua cloth dragon show," said Fu Zirui, a citizen from Ningbo. At the opening ceremony of  the 'Theme Day of Ningbo (Zhejiang)', the performance of Xue Qiaoping, an inheritor of Nanhai playing teeth, sparked an eruption of cheers and applauses at Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition 2019. She aspired to make Ningbo known by more people through the attractive and vivid traditional cultural performance at the Expo.

Into summer vacation, Beijing Expo ushered in a new wave of vistors. As of now, the Expo has been open for more than 80 days, during which there is no lack of intangible cultural heritage on many theme day activities featuring different provinces and cities, including Beijing, Hebei and Chongqing.

Eight representative projects of intangible cultural heritage including carved paper-cut and Tongshan wood carving and special intangible heritage projects from Wuhan and Jinzhou were showed on Hubei Day; Shanxi noodles art show and Taiyuan Gong and drum were performed successively on Shanxi Day; Hunan embroidery and Liling ceramic were displayed on Hunan Day.

When you enter the Expo on the opening day, the first intangible heritage booth on your path was filigree-mosaic. "Many travelers asked me the question, 'Are these trinkets and crafts for sale?' That truly proves the beauty and popularity of the project," said the inheritor. All the way down from the Expo town, Yin Xiuyun, a national intangible cultural heritage bearer, as well as other inheritors of filigree-mosaic, paper-cut, clay sculpture and pyrography gained like-for-like attention from the visitors.

Yin Xiuyun was invited to demonstrate carved lacquerware in the Expo town. With the number of visitors on the rise, a growing number of Chinese and foreign tourists stopped by his booth. Old as he is, Yin is deeply engrossed in creation and willing to attend various display and promotional activities of intangible cultural heritage. "The Expo provides an excellent opportunity to let more people know about our country's intangible cultural heritage."

Intangible heritage at the Expo is not only limited to what is performed and demonstrated. In fact, both the pseudo-classic architecture Yongning Pavilion and Beijing Garden are built with traditional crafts. Based on the ancient craftsmanship of "one linen five putty", each archaize column of Yongning pavilion was brushed five times. Over 200 Suzhou-style colored drawings in the Beijing Garden were painted by hand. Li Haixian, a paint master and intangible cultural heritage inheritor, led a maintenance team of 20 people, prepared at all time to repair the buildings.

There have been more than a hundred varieties of intangible heritage demonstrated since the opening of the Expo. Some are performed in Gui Rui Theater and on various squares and some displayed and experienced in each garden, enabling visitors to feel the endless charm of intangible cultural heritage at a close range.