DUBAI: In the Grand Hall of the Mohammed bin Rashid Library, a new cultural beacon in Dubai and the UAE, several Chinese citizens enjoyed an event where two girls played the musical instrument, the guzheng, building bridges of communication between peoples from different culture and overcoming the language barrier.
Li Dongxia, Chairman of Global Overseas Chinese Calligrapher Association and Chairman of Chinese Qipao Association, was seen sitting on an Arabian-style table wearing a traditional Chinese outfit while translating the inspiring poems of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, written on rice paper in the Chinese language.
Li selected a poem, which His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum began by stating, “With the rise of every morning in Africa, the deer wakes up realising that it must race the fastest lions, or else it will be killed. It does not matter if you are a deer, with the sunrise every morning, you have to run faster than others to be successful.”
In her statement to WAM, Li explained the story of her presence in Dubai since 2000 and why she chose the UAE to be her second home after China, noting that she is highlighting the deep-rooted relations between the UAE and China through Chinese calligraphy and art, and presenting a good image of the Chinese people abroad by using art.
“Dubai is an open cosmopolitan city, one that allows different nationalities and cultures to live in harmony and exchange expertise and innovations. We are living in a great era that enables us to show off our talent and attain the required wisdom and courage to address the future,” she said.
Li, who comes from Xiao County, Anhui Province, stressed that she is always keen to showcase traditional Chinese art on all occasions, and highlight the importance of Chinese traditions and culture, adding that she participated in the Qingming Chinese Festival in the desert in Dubai, as well as the Chinese Spring Festival among other events, and noting that culture and the arts are not only a beautiful hymn but are also a tribute to the country’s developmental achievements.
Li affirmed that spreading and promoting Chinese culture abroad is a responsibility and a commitment, describing her art as soft power transmitted by Jiangnan Ink of the legacy of the descendants of Yanhuang on the back of horses across thousands of miles from Changuan, to showcase a strong and optimistic image of mixed ideas and weave the most beautiful poems for the people of the homeland from the Chinese community.
In various countries, including the UAE, many visitors to Chinese events feel that they returned to the era of Confucius and Meng, allowing the audience to experience the feelings and dreams of ancient sages, which explains the mixture of tradition with modernity, she said in conclusion.
Over the past years, Li participated in a number of cultural events in the UAE and organised many Sino –Arab cultural exchange activities such as calligraphy, painting, communication, exhibition, health and cultural lectures, among others.
As a Chairman of Global Overseas Chinese Calligrapher Association, Li Dongxia has taught calligraphy to the local Chinese community over the past years. In 2017, she organised “Global Overseas Chinese Dubai Cultural Flash Mob” in front of Burj Khalifa that attracted over 1,000 overseas Chinese from 32 countries who came to Dubai. The event showcased Dubai’s inclusiveness and tolerance to other culture as an art and culture capital. In 2019, she also organised Global Chinese Calligraphy & Painting Grand Exhibition that presented 500 high-end artwork, while 300 famous artist from 77 countries jointly created a long roll horse painting with 100 metre length in the middle of Dubai’s desert.
Li obtained several prizes for personal calligraphy and painting artwork in China and over 20 countries among which 5 calligraphy artwork were caved as stone inscription in different province of China.
Li is Chairman of Chinese Qipao (national dress) Association; Chairman of Chinese Cultural Communication Centre; Chairman of UAE Chinese Calligraphy Association; Director of CNY Gala Performance Organisation Committee; Honorary President of UAE Chinese Women Association; Honorary President of UAE Chinese Cultural & Education Association.