In a joint organization by the Cultural Affairs Bureau of the Macao SAR Government (IC), the Macao Foundation, and the Macao Artist Society, the “A Retrospective Exhibition of Decorated Arches of Macao in Commemoration of the 15th Anniversary of Macao's Handover to China” was inaugurated at the Tap Seac Gallery on 29 September, Monday, at 6:30 p.m. Present at the ceremony were the Commander of the People's Liberation Army Macao Garrison, Colonel Wang Wen, President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau of the Macao SAR Government, Dr. Ung Vai Meng, Deputy Director of the Department of Education and Culture of the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Macao Special Administrative Region, Mr. Zhang Xiaoguang, Deputy Director of the Department of Public Diplomacy and Information of the Office of the Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China in the Macao SAR Government, Mr. Li Xiaoquan, Member of the Administrative Committee of the Macao Foundation, Mr. Ao Weng Chi, President of the Board of Directors of the Macao Daily News, Mr. Lei Seng Chon and President of Macau Artists Society, Mr. Lai Ieng.
To mark the 65th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China as well as the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the Macao Special Administrative Region, IC hosts this exhibition at Tap Seac Gallery featuring 30 paintings by former pailou (decorated arches) designers/producers and other members of the Macau Artists Society, besides precious photographs showing National Day pailou, and actual replicas of pailou. The event has an extension in Tap Seac Square, where, using time-honoured skills, a contemporary themed National Day pailou was erected. Therefore, this exhibition offers a glimpse into those heady decades when impressive archways were erected across Macao to hail the exploits of the New China, inviting younger people to appreciate and older people to revisit this unique local Pailou tradition.
From 1949 to 1969, National Day pailou were installed to celebrate the feats of the PRC. The art unit of the publicity section of the “Preparatory Committee of the Macao Compatriots Celebrating the National Day of the PRC,” was responsible for erecting the pailou throughout Macao, and its dedicated production team included designers, carpenters, electricians, painters, and scaffolding builders, who assiduously worked to design and erect magnificent archways in just a couple of days, thus giving rise to a distinctive, if short-lived, pailou tradition honouring the National Day.
To give insights into the works, the organizer will host a lecture in Cantonese, where former pailou producers will share their rewarding experiences, reveal the connection between the archways and the population, and discuss the evolution of National Day pailou design and installation skills during those memorable decades. The lecture will be hosted at the Macao Museum Auditorium on 18 October (Saturday), from 3 to 5 p.m. Seats are limited so reservation is required. Interested parties should call the Museum through tel. 83996699 during office hours before 16 October.
This exhibition opens daily from 30 September to 31 October, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., at the Tap Seac Gallery (address: No. 95, Avenida do Conselheiro Ferreira de Almeida). Admission is free.