27 April 2010
Denmark’s Little Mermaid resurfaces to music and fanfare in Shanghai, with a replacement video installation by artist Ai Weiwei underway for Copenhagen
Sarkozy plans pre-Expo meetings in Beijing and with Shanghai’s French community
Ordinary Chinese-Americans get involved through “The Chinese in America” wall
With Expo Online also set to launch on May 1st, the organizer reveals part will be in 3-D
Sarkozy to Visit Beijing, Meet with SH-based French
4/26/10 – Of the 21 state and government leaders who are scheduled to attend the Expo’s opening ceremony on April 30th, French President Nicolas Sarkozy will be the only one to fly to Beijing and meet with several top Chinese officials, China’s Ambassador to France Kong Quan said. Beijing and Paris attach great importance to Sarkozy’s three-day state visit to China starting April 28, and talks will focus on developing “long term” and “comprehensive” bilateral ties, the top Chinese diplomat was quoted as saying by China News Service in Paris. “This arrangement shows that both countries think highly and expect much from the visit,” the top envoy said. Along with his wife Carla Bruni, the French president will kick off the visit from Xi’an, the capital of China’s Northwest Shaanxi province. Sarkozy will also hold a private meeting for the French community in Shanghai on Friday afternoon; the invitation saw such a high response that restrictions had to be made on attendance to ensure venue space.
[China Daily, French Consulate]
Fujitsu Supports Japan Pavilion
4/26/10 – Fujitsu today announced that it will be supporting the Japan Pavilion, nicknamed “Purple Silkworm Island.” Fujitsu’s support will include developing an add-on entertainment website, “Meng Gui Suo Meng: A place that inspires dreams is itself the stuff that dreams are made of,” that will go live during the Expo, to help increase awareness of the Japan Pavilion and foster friendship between Japan and China.
Chinese-American Photo Wall Underway
4/26/10 – Ordinary Chinese living in the Bay Area, USA, are getting involved in the Expo by being photographed for a wall exhibition called “The Chinese in America,” in the USA Pavilion. “That’s a lot of exposure for people who were just going about their routine when they came within the long outreach arm of Mabel Teng, executive director of the Chinese Culture Foundation of San Francisco,” writes Sam Whiting of The San Francisco Chronicle. “The idea is to show that America is a diverse country and that Chinese are part of the diversity and the strength,” says Teng. “We want to have every strata represented in the digital wall.” The virtual picture montage, which will rotate 10,000 images, is fundamentally an Internet project, in which people of Chinese heritage can submit digital pictures of themselves and upload them onto www.jointhewall.org. To extend the reach, Teng opened a portrait studio in the Chinese Culture Center for walk-ins. “They take this really, really seriously,” says Teng, who has seen men bring their wedding suits to the Center. Teng has also sent outreach teams into 23 gathering places in Chinese strongholds on both sides of the bay and down the Peninsula. “It’s a people’s wall, and the people want to be part of it,” Teng said, translating for a fellow representative.
[Sam Whiting / The San Francisco Chronicle]
A Look at the First Israel Pavilion
4/26/10 – This is the first time that Israel has built a national pavilion at the Expo, allocating $6 million for its participation. The Israel Pavilion consists of three areas including the Whispering Garden, Hall of Light and Hall of Innovations. The green orchard, known as the Whispering Garden, is displayed for visitors entering the building. When walking by, visitors will hear the trees whispering in both English and Chinese. Within the pavilion, the Hall of Light will display on a 15 meter high screen, with films highlighting Israel’s innovations and technological achievements. The Hall of Innovations is the centerpiece of the pavilion, where visitors can talk and share their hopes for a better future with Israeli children, scientists, doctors and inventors through hundreds of screens.
Liverpudlian Arts to Show, May-June
4/26/10 – From May 1st to June 19th, an exhibition of Liverpudlian Arts will be showcased at the Expo. At the Bluecoat Display Centre, the work of British artists will be displayed including both ceramics and jewelry. One featured artist is Li-Sheng Cheng, who, inspired by her Chinese upbringing, creates functional silverware and jewelry, ranging from textured rings, earrings and bangles. The work of Ken Eastman will also be on display, including original manuscripts from the Derby ceramics factory archives.
Lee Myung-bak to Hold Summit, Visit Expo
4/25/10 – South Korean President Lee Myung-bak will visit Shanghai on Friday to hold a summit with Chinese President Hu Jintao and attend the Expo, Cheong Wa Dae said Saturday. Lee is expected to discuss with Hu ways to enhance the strategic partnership between Korea and China and exchange views on pending regional issues, according to the presidential office. On Friday evening, Lee will attend a welcome dinner and the opening ceremony of the World Expo. On Saturday, he will visit the Korean and Chinese pavilions, and return home after meeting with South Korean residents of Shanghai in the afternoon.
[Kim So-hyun / The Korea Herald]
Denmark’s Little Mermaid Arrives
4/25/10 – Denmark’s Little Mermaid sculpture resurfaced to music and fanfare Sunday at the Expo park, a month after leaving her perch in Copenhagen harbor for the first time ever. The statue is considered a national treasure in Denmark and has been a major tourist attraction since 1913. “She has since then sat quietly on her rock on Copenhagen Harbour in Copenhagen until today,” Christopher Bo Bramsen, the commissioner general of Denmark’s Expo pavilion said at the unveiling ceremony. “From today, the stature of the Little Mermaid will be the centre of the Danish Pavilion at Expo 2010.” “Millions of tourists will be mesmerized by her beauty,” said Shanghai deputy mayor Tu Guangshao at the unveiling. Mike Lippert, the pavilion’s creative director, said, “We wanted to do something really extraordinary”. The move has made the Danish pavilion one of the Expo’s most talked-about attractions in China, where every schoolchild reads Andersen’s stories. A temporary video installation by Ai Weiwei, one of China’s most famous artists and an outspoken social critic, will be unveiled in Copenhagen in May, at the mermaid’s former perch. It will project live images of the mermaid and her visitors at the Expo.
[Daily News Egypt]
Philippines Pavilion Exhibit Unveiled
4/23/10 – The Philippines Pavilion unveiled its exhibition plan on Friday. With its rhombus and wedge patterns, traditional tattoos, labor tools and jewelry, the Pavilion is positioned to embody the culture of its country. Upon entering, visitors will experience unique local performances as well as displays of tourist destinations on a large screen. The exterior is decorated with eye-catching collages and transparent materials in the shape of diamonds, featuring patterns of pottery and traditional textile products. Inside, various customs and art performances including, vocal music, folk, rock, solo and street-style performances will be showcased.
UK Pavilion Welcomes Heroes from Sichuan at Soft Opening
4/21/10 – Last Tuesday, the first day of the Expo’s soft opening, the UK pavilion hosted a delegation from Sichuan Province, made up of “heros” of the Sichuan earthquake in 2008. The delegation included officials, military personnel, and medical personnel – all of whom had played a key role in dealing with the aftermath of the Wenchuan earthquake in the devastated area of Sichuan. Following their visit, the director of the Sichuan Pavilion, Mr. Yi Yang, commented, “We were given a very warm reception at the UK pavilion; and were all impressed by what we saw, and the kindness of the staff who looked after us on our visit.” Carma Elliot, the British Consul-General, commented, “It was a pleasure to host the heroes of Sichuan in our pavilion. We look forward to working with our friends in the Sichuan pavilion over the six months of Expo to explore increased co-operation and projects.”
Expo Online to be in 3-D
4/26/10 – Expo Online will launch on May 1st, and it was reported that the organizer has decided to offer parts of it in 3-D. “The 3-D website is unprecedented in the World Expo history,” said Wang Liping, who is in charge of the 3-D Shanghai World Expo website program. Around 500 staff have been working around the clock for the website’s official opening May 1, he told Xinhua news agency. The proposed website www.expo.cn will consist of several parts, including “site tour”, “interactive community” and “future city”. Clicking the “site tour”, more than 150 3-D pavilions will be shown on the map. Users can click any pavilions they like, then mascot “Haibao” will bring them to the chosen pavilion and give a brief introduction about the display. There’s also an interactive community area for online visitors to share their experience of the virtual trips. “The 3-D pavilions are expected to stay online even after the conclusion of the expo,” said Wang.
Residents to Perform Urban Harmony
4/26/10 – Throughout the Expo period, residents from the 18 districts of Shanghai will take turns performing programs with local characteristics at Citizen’s Square. These programs organized by the Shanghai Bureau of World Expo Coordination include dances, songs and local games showcasing Shanghai’s culture and traditions. The performances are intended to reflect one of the Expo’s themes: harmony in urban communities.
Bridges and Roads to be Closed
4/24/10 – On April 27, for the World Expo opening rehearsal and on April 30, for the opening ceremony, LuPu Bridge and several roads in Shanghai will be closed. From April 30 to May 1, several roads near the Expo site will be closed including, NanPu Bridge, Yan’An Road East Tunnel, Yan’An Elevated Road, Inner Ring Elevated Road, South-North Elevated Road and LuBan Road Interchange.
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