© SWACT

Feb 09 - 29

The Gift of Life

Cardero St. at Robson

Why is fish important to the Lunar New Year?

In Mandarin, “fish” sounds like “surplus”. We always hope to have extras to share in a new year. Fish, in many Chinese-speaking communities, symbolizes prosperity. In North America, salmon is very important to the Indigenous peoples of the west coast. It is a primary food source and a symbol of fertility, abundance, and renewal. 

This Lunar New Year, take a walk down to Cardero and Robson, and remember to look up. The Gift of Life installation lights up bamboo fish within the trees, allowing them to swim free in the skies. Through this important symbol, we hope to bring together the warm well-wishes of both the Asian communities and the Coast Salish peoples, as well as everyone who may pass through the streets of Vancouver. 

Huei-Ting Tsai / Bamboo Artist

Bamboo’s growth cycle completes within 6-7 years, and it is also very easy to grow. Taiwan’s bamboo crafts are significant in the realm of the home. During the Japanese colonial period, bamboo crafts became one of the highest exports of the island.

Huei-Ting Tsai believes that even if traditional needs are replaced by newer mediums, the skills and characteristics of bamboo weaving can still solve the problems of modern society.

For bamboo crafts, weaving is a combination of logic. She fell in love with this kind of logical thinking, and she is a master at cutting bamboo! Huei-Ting is only about five feet tall, but she can carry bamboo stalks twice her height. From harvesting the raw material to sitting down and weaving, she lets the bamboo speak. The chemistry between the crafts master and the material is gracefully captured within every work.

Bamboo Says, her brand, is to let the bamboo speak for itself, and let her creativity speak to you!