Interview: Expert calls for joint efforts to preserve Chinese calligraphy

Source: Xinhua| 2019-04-22 18:44:41|Editor: mingmei
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by Xinhua writer Wang Jiangang

UNITED NATIONS, April 22 (Xinhua) -- The global village should work together to preserve and develop cultural traditions like Chinese calligraphy on the United Nations (UN) platform, in order to make the world a better place to live, a renowned Chinese calligrapher has said.

"Chinese calligraphy is a unique cultural symbol for this ancient country (China) to share with the rest of the world the vast and extensive Chinese culture," said Sun Xiaoyun, vice chairperson of the China Calligraphers Association.

Sun made the remarks recently when attending a calligraphy and paintings exhibition entitled "In Pursuit of Peace" held at the UN headquarters in New York, in celebration of the annual UN Chinese Language Day on April 20.

"Chinese calligraphy appears to be simple with only the combination of dots and strokes, but behind this 'simple combination,' there exist infinite cultural profoundness and richness," said Sun.

It is "not only about writing, but also a wise way for ancient Chinese people to know the world," explained Sun, who began practicing calligraphy when she was only three years old.

"The complexity, structural plasticity and the diversity of dots and strokes of Chinese calligraphy fonts can, in some ways, inspire people from different cultural backgrounds to cultivate a special interest in Chinese culture, even though they don't understand Chinese," she added.

On Sept. 30, 2009, Chinese calligraphy was inscribed on the list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

In the eyes of Sun, the UN, as "an important platform for diverse cultures to blend and complement each other," needs to "shoulder the responsibility of promoting and sharing the fine traditional cultures of all nations and let them learn from each other and make the world a harmonious place to live."

"Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has a special liking for Chinese calligraphy, showcasing the integration of Chinese calligraphy with various other cultures on this platform," said Sun.

Living in an era of computers and Internet, Sun said she has felt a stronger sense of responsibility to help preserve and develop cultural traditions like Chinese calligraphy together with the UN.

"That is the main reason why I attended this exhibition at the United Nations," she said.

Over the years, Sun has helped organize calligraphy exhibitions, lectures and exchange activities in countries including Japan, South Korea, the United States, Italy, France and Russia.

Sun said she hopes that more and more people, in China and from other parts of the world, could join her in the endeavor of sharing and advancing the special art form, which she thinks could contribute to building a better world.

"Practicing this art form helps people keep both mind and body fit, which is of special importance to this world with so many wars and conflicts," she said.

"With a smile, you play with the brush and ink, and sickness becomes lighter," Sun said, citing Lu You, a poet of China's Song Dynasty.

"It is vital for the entire human being if they really understand the essence of Chinese calligraphy," she said.