Years of research, including many staff trips, went into making the Take Me There:® China exhibit. In this blog series, you'll see how we were inspired by the people, places, and traditions of modern China as we recreated these top ten exhibit highlights. You'll also get a snapshot of what your family will experience in these extraordinary spaces—brought to you straight from our exhibit developers!
Within the Marketplace in Take Me There: China, your family can enter a recreated calligraphy shop and explore the art and traditions of Chinese calligraphy. Calligraphy is a traditional art form that is revered in China. Chinese people speak in many different dialects, but write in just one language.
Try your hand at calligraphy using authentic tools. Using a real brush and practice paper, paint different strokes freehand or follow a template. It takes skill, practice, and patience to learn how to draw the Chinese characters. To help you get started, a video of a local calligrapher will provide instructions for holding and manipulating the brush.
Try stamping different Chinese symbols with real carved chops. Chops are like rubber stamps—Chinese calligraphers and artists use them to sign their work by pressing them into ink, then stamping the paper. In the Calligraphy Shop your family can experiment with sample chops using red ink.
Other things to see and do:
- Be inspired by examples of beautiful calligraphy on display on the shop walls, along with traditional supplies, such as ink stones and sticks, brushes, and rice paper.
- Over in the People’s Park/Tea Shop area, your family can take part in a Dishu program, using large, foam-tipped brushes to trace characters in water on the slate pavement.
- Meet our Teachers in Residence! Teachers from the Confucius Institute will offer regularly scheduled, facilitated programs in the shop, answer questions, and provide additional information about calligraphy.