National Day Thoughts: Calendar Poster Art

Tomorrow is China’s National Day, established on the 1st of October 1949, when the country gained its independence. Nowadays in the West, most people’s association with this occasion is Golden Week, one of the few times of the year when China takes a break. Another connection that Westerners have with the founding of the People’s Republic is Xuan Chuan Hua, Chinese Propaganda Art, which is now iconic around the world. This art style would never have existed without the decades of commercial artistic development that preceded it. This year I’m taking a look at 月份牌 Yue Fen Pai, Calendar Posters, an art form centred around early 20th century Shanghai.


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National Holidays in China

As we are enjoying our first bank holiday weekend of the year in England, eating hot cross buns, and looking forward to a four-day week ahead of us, I have been thinking about national holidays in China. Even If you are based in the West, you may increasingly have to deal with the Chinese calendar, as companies you work with suddenly shut up shop for “Tomb Sweeping” or “Double Nine”.


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On Being Chinese

I like to take quite positive things about China and Chinese culture as the starting points of my writing, or good things that have happened to me. This brief commentary though, is the result of some recent, very unpleasant, racially based encounters I’ve had around London. I have been told to “go back to Shanghai” (close kid, but no banana, I’m Cantonese), and had my platted hair grabbed because I “looked really Chinese”. Well, of course I Do. I am. And damned proud of it too.


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