More than 700 designers, cultural researchers, officials, overseas visitors and journalists gathered at the Great Hall of the People on Feb 11 to witness the unveiling of the newly designated Spring Festival Symbol－a Chinese knot in the shape of the character chun, meaning spring, embedded with another character, fu, meaning blessing.
The design was selected from among 17,357 works submitted by designers domestically and abroad.
The effort, undertaken in January 2014 by several groups－China International Cultural Exchange Association, Association for Yan Huang Culture of China, Eastern China Cultural Heritage Protection Center and a collection of Chinese radio, film, television and newspaper media－encouraged designers to submit ideas for a Spring Festival symbol.
Two college students from Capital Normal University came out on top. One of them, Song Shan, was thrilled that her work had been selected. “The activity allowed me to learn more about Chinese traditional culture,” she said, adding that more youths should pay more attention to it. Li Dongxue, the other winner, was also happy to be recognized.
“Some senior designers and folklore researchers helped us polish the design, making it more Chinese stylish and appealing,” Li said.
Zhang Ming, a Chinese designer from Finland, was the first to submit a design. “Every Chinese person who lives overseas has a trigger to be moved by their mother land,” Zhang said.
Xu Jialu, president of the Association for Yan Huang Culture of China, said: “In many people’s minds, Spring Festival is no longer that important. Some people say that the taste of Lunar New Year has faded away－which is a shame.”
He said he hoped the new symbol would call the public’s attention to the Lunar New Year.
“We have customs such as posting a Lunar New Year scroll and lighting fireworks, but these are not exclusive to Spring Festival,” Xu said.
Du Xiaofan, a cultural heritage official from UNESCO, said the global effort to solicit symbol designs helped boost people’s understanding of Chinese traditional culture. And it was also a patriotic project. “I believe the selected symbol will be a bridge for Sino-foreign cultural communication,” Du said.