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United Nations Presents The Magic of Zen

The Magic of Zen, United Nations
On view now through April 29
South Lobby of the Secretariat Building

In celebration of Chinese Language Day, which takes place annually on April 20th, the Chinese Translation Service in association with the Permanent Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the UN and the UNSRC Chinese Book Club organized an exhibition entitled The Magic of Zen. On display are traditional ink paintings and calligraphy by Wang Fangyu, Wang Dongsheng, Wang Mansheng, Fung Ming Chip, Jin Xufan, Tang Ke, Hai Tao, Tai Xiangzhou, and Cai Dong. These works illustrate Zen aesthetics such as mystique, tranquility, depth, elegance, and simplicity while reflecting the Chinese painting ideology of “drawing artistic inspiration from both within and without.” Five of these artists are represented by AWNY member Fu Qiumeng Fine Art.

Language Days at the United Nations seek to celebrate multilingualism and cultural diversity, as well as to promote equal use of all six official languages throughout the organization. Chinese was established as an official language of the UN in 1946 and became a recognized working language in 1973. Chinese Language Day is held each year on April 20th, which is called guyu (“rain of millet”) in the traditional Chinese calendar and pays tribute to the historian Cangjie (circa 2667 BCE–2596 BCE), who is credited with inventing Chinese characters. Legend has it that he had four eyes and that when he created characters, the deities and ghosts cried and the sky rained millet.

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