This Day, That Year

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - PAGE TWO -

Item­fromDec14,1984,in Chi­naDaily:AChi­ne­segar­den­inLiver­pool,Eng­land, has­won­theGoldMedalat Liver­pool’sIn­ter­na­tional Gar­denFes­ti­valth­isyear.

It­was­de­signed­byLi Zhimin,an­ar­chi­tectwith Bei­jing’sGar­denBuild­ing Co....

Tra­di­tional Chi­nese gar­dens strive to achieve the har­mony be­tween man and na­ture. And in places such as Suzhou, Jiangsu prov­ince, best known for its his­toric gar­dens, the de­sign and lay­out are in­flu­enced by space con­straints.

Un­like gar­dens that make ready use of all the breath­tak­ing beauty and mag­ni­tude of Mother Na­ture, gar­dens in South­ern China are small in size.

Minia­ture wooden pago­das, stone bridges and arched doors are care­fully placed on moun­tains and over lakes, of­ten man-made, or half-hid­den by clus­ters of bam­boo.

Right pro­por­tion is the key as the dif­fer­ent el­e­ments within the same space speak to one an­other in gen­tle, po­lite voices.

Na­ture in this case is painstak­ingly groomed and de­lib­er­ately pruned to rep­re­sent the aes­thetic ideal en­shrined by an­cient China’s elite.

For today’s Chi­nese, the gar­dens from the past ex­isted more like pieces of mem­o­ra­bilia — a win­dow onto the by­gone days through which peo­ple might be in­ter­ested in tak­ing a look.

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