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May 11, 2013
8:00 AM - 9:00 PM
In the Lobby
Richland, WA 99352

The Story of Zodiac Exhibition

Saturday, May 11

Welcome to "The Story of Zodiac". This exhibition to celebrate Asian Awareness Month is presented by the Richland Public Library, the Tri Cities Chinese American Association and a special thanks to the Tri Cities Vietnamese Association and the Taipei Economic Cultural Office in Seattle.

The Story of Zodiac

About This Exhibition

Shi-er-shengxiào (????), also known as the 12 Chinese Zodiac, refers to a 12-year cycle. The Zodiac is represented by 12 animals, starting with Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog, and Pig. Viewed as a systematic astrology, the cycle is based on the lunar calendar to count year. Each year has its own attributed animal. For example, 2013 is the Year of Snake, 2014 will be the Year of Horse. It is believed by Chinese that there are special relationships between these animals and human characters.

There is no known record to understand how these 12 animals were selected. Many Chinese children’s literature views the Zodiac as the result of a Great Race from the Jade Emperor. The animals competed in a long race, on land, through the water, mountain, and the woods, to show who was worthy of these 12 honorable titles. One has to ponder why and how the final 12 animals made their way through other seemingly more powerful animals. Of course, these speculations and skepticisms only add a mysterious layer to this set of beloved animals.

This year, with the help from Taipei Economic Cultural Office in Seattle, we are able to display some selections of the New Year Zodiac Prints made by contemporary artists in Taiwan. Each year, printmakers in Taiwan compete against each other to be chosen as the “Visual Representatives” for the specific year. As of 2013, this competition is in its 29th year. Blending traditions with modern culture, these prints provide viewers with festive spirits during new year time: Hope, peace, fortune, and prosperity. In addition to the print collections, Tri-Cities Vietnamese Association’s New Year collections and paper cutouts from China also provide holistic dimensions to this special exhibition. We hope after this exhibition, you will be able to understand more about the culture of the Zodiac and their symbolic meanings.


Yichien Cooper, Guest Curator
Shuai Lu, President, Tri-Cities Chinese American Association

This exhibition is hosted and organized by
Tri-Cities Chinese American Association
Richland Public Library

Special thanks to
Tri-Cities Vietnamese Association
Taipei Economic Cultural Office in Seattle

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