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This was my first exhibition and opening party as a curator and I was very excited and looking forward to discussing it with the participants.

Before the party, I swept the floor of the Fire Station as the last step in our preparation for the party. Frances and I collected leftover nails to reuse. Finally we were ready to welcome the audience.

Jianhao and I were in charge of serving drinks from 17:00-17:30. This was my first time doing such a job and I was very curious and happy. I especially enjoyed opening the beer bottles as my dad had opened himself before at home and I hadn’t tried it. I opened two bottles of beer for the visitors at the party and I was happy that I was trying something new again.

(Photoed by Xiaodong Liu)

What I was most looking forward to was talking to the other visitors. I found that many of the visitors were interested in “Tai Chi”. I explained the difference between traditional Chinese Tai Chi and contemporary simplified Tai Chi to a total of three visitors. I explained: “Traditional Chinese Tai Chi is mainly confrontational and seeks to fight hardness with softness. However, contemporary simplified  Tai Chi is based on physical exercise and not only does it simplify the postures, but also moves more slowly, making it more suitable for the elderly or those who cannot turn around or turn back quickly. And there are many elderly people in China who exercise by doing taijiquan.” Since I also practiced Tai Chi for a year at university so I know more about it.

And in the process of talking to the audience, I discovered a new point of view. Many people think that there is only one type of “Chinese Kung Fu”, but in fact the “Chinese Kung Fu” spread on the internet is mainly Buddhist martial  monks. When I explained to the visitors that “Chinese Kung Fu” is mostly Buddhist and Taijiquan is Taoist, they were very surprised and said they had never heard anything about it. So it was very rewarding for me to introduce them.

The deviation from the understanding of “Chinese Kung Fu” has inspired me. In the publicity I saw, although the majority of the videos featured Buddhist martial monks, there was very little texts and no clear indication of whether the videos were Buddhist or Taoist, so the audience didn’t have a clear idea of how Chinese kung fu was classified. Therefore this is something worth being adapted.

I also listened to Xiaodong’s presentation of his exhibits and finally took a group photos with everyone to celebrate. It was really a memorable day for me.

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