The First New Mexico Chinese Lantern Festival, a large scale, internationally held, celebration of Chinese culture is now lighting up Expo New Mexico. Giant, intricate silk lanterns in the form of dragons, pandas and more, hand crafted by Chinese artists will be glowing nightly from 5:30 PM until 10PM through November 12th.
The festival, with origins hailing all the way from Zigong, China, features high energy stage performances by Tibetan and Mongolian dancers and acrobats as well as contortionists, plate spinners and face changers. The Chinese lanterns each hold a special significance in traditional Chinese culture and are lit on many occasions annually to help usher in a good harvest, and to celebrate holidays like Chinese New Year.
This is the first festival of Chinese Lanterns to find its way to Albuquerque. The festival has also been held internationally in Milan, Italy; Dubai, UAE; Sydney, Australia and more. The show is currently traveling across the United States and Albuquerque is its 14th stop. The event is being put on by Tianyu Arts and Culture Inc., a traveling performance art group who showcase Chinese Arts and cultural traditions. Their work was also shown in 2012 James Bond film “Skyfall.”
Guests can stroll through exhibits like a giant dragon, silk tulips, a pagoda, monkeys, lotus flowers and more, while eating spring rolls, teriyaki chicken and other oriental food offerings. There are also many handmade crafts available for purchase.
One artist, who made the trip all the way from China, paints intricate scenes and animals on the inside of tiny glass and crystal bottles and beads.
There are also prayer flags, Chinese knot art, sculptures and traditional clothing available for purchase. Guests are encouraged to take photos of the sculptures but are asked to please refrain from touching the delicate work.
The festival provides an excellent opportunity for New Mexicans and their families to learn more about Chinese art and culture, spend quality time together outside and come together as a community to support each other and the many diverse cultures that make up our world. Don’t miss this one!
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