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Palace Museum encourages people to take culture home

(Xinhuanet)    10:35, July 29, 2017

BEIJING, July 29 -- "Cultural creative products are good culture carriers,” said Shan Jixiang, director of the Palace Museum, during a lecture at Xinhuanet on Wednesday.

"Make the cultural relics ‘alive’ means reconsidering the value of the cultural relics, and infusing cultural elements into today’s modern life," Shan added.

After opening the mysterious West District of the Palace Museum, visitors, especially the young visitors, have become more curious about the Palace Museum than before, said Shan.

“This is because people connect the Palace Museum with the living place of their favorite role in an ancient-costume TV series--The Legend of Zhenhuan" ( an imperial concubine).

"People want to find out which room in the West District did Zhenhuan actually live in history," he added.

This change made Shan realize, to make the cultural relics serve the present and fulfill the mission of the museum, it is very important to make cultural relics “alive” and entice modern people’s tastes.

“We are trying every possible way to encourage people to take home the culture of Palace Museum," said Shan.

As how to connect tradition with modernity, Shan believed that a good way is to design and produce cultural creative products.

“We should understand the public’s needs, dig out information from the museum’s collection, combine historical minutiae with modern sensibilities and technologies, and convert them into cultural creative products in the end,” said Shan.

“We have designed and developed a total of around 8,700 kinds of distinctive cultural creative products and accessories by the end of 2015,” Shan noted, giving examples that cultural creative products have penetrated into every part of people’s lives.

“For example, we all use phones, so we designed more than 400 kinds of phone cases decorated with cultural elements; we also designed a stringed Buddhist beads-inspired earphones, which became the winner of a national creative products contest,” Shan said.

The Palace Museum has countless treasures and profound culture, which inspire cultural creative product designs.

“By extracting available innovative elements on cultural relics and borrowing cultural symbols from distinguished cultural resources, we have produced many appealing and useful products.” said Shan.

“For example, in the painting Armored Emperor Qianlong Inspecting the Troops, Emperor Qianlong (1736-1796 AD) is riding on horseback. The horse is very lifelike, so we extract the image of the horse and decorate it on things like neckties and fruit folks.”

"Besides, we have designed zaojing umbrellas by resembling zaojing or caisson ceiling, a kind of ceiling with distinctive feature of classical Chinese architecture," Shan said.

“Now, we have finally met people’s needs of taking home the culture of Palace Museum.” said Shan.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Du Mingming, Bianji)

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