22 February 2017 09:41

An exhibition launch in Carlisle marked the official opening of a Lancaster University Confucius Institute (LUCI) teaching site.

‘East Meets West: The Brushstrokes of Wang Ying’ opened at Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery on 16 February.

University Pro Chancellor Roger Liddle, Lord Liddle, of Carlisle, was a guest at the VIP opening of the exhibition of 45 paintings by Mr Wang Ying, a Chinese artist and diplomat.

In his speech Lord Liddle reflected on Lancaster University’s mission to promote international understanding, its pride in its Chinese students, its Confucius Institute and its partnership in China and the wonder of seeing northern English views through Chinese eyes painted by Mr Wang.

Lord Liddle thanked Mr Wang, who is also the Head Consul, Education Section of the Consulate General of the People’s Republic in China (PRC) in Manchester, for his contribution to foster global understanding and cultural dialogues.

Tullie House has a learning and engagement programme enabling hands-on object handling workshops and LUCI’s move to provide one of its Chinese teachers to help the gallery research and share their collection of Chinese artefacts and to work with the public has been welcomed by Tullie House.

Other guest speakers at the event included:  Chair of Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery Trustees Roger Cooke , who hosted the opening, Director, Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery Andrew Mackay, Consul General Dr Sun Dali, of the Consulate General of the P.R.C in Manchester, Lord Mayor of Carlisle Councillor Colin Stothard and Mr Wang Ying.

Director of LUCI Professor Wei Shen said after the launch: “China’s President Xi Jinping once said Confucius Institutes belong to China and belong to the world. I think today’s exhibition conveys this message perfectly. It is how Chinese arts meet with Western landscapes - how beauty is being interpreted in different forms across cultural and language boundaries.”

Each speaker was presented with an original painting by Mr Wang Ying of a Rooster to commemorate the Chinese New Year of the Rooster.

The exhibition at Tullie House Museum and Art Gallery runs until 21 May 2017.

Lancaster University’s Chinese learning and engagement programme with Tullie House will also comprise workshops in poetry, painting, Chinese language and outreach to schools.  The first arts workshop, attended by 40 people, was run by Chinese Director of LUCI Professor Sarah Zhang and LUCI’s teacher at Tullie House Gloria Huang on Saturday.