Zhijiang Cultural Center opens to visitors

Wu Huixin
After four years preparation, the first two museum sites in the 17.2-hectare complex are open to the public, with bookings available online.
Wu Huixin

After four years of preparation, the Zhijiang Cultural Center finally rolled out the welcome mat for visitors on August 29.

The 17.2-hectare complex includes the Zhijiang Culture Public Service Center, Zhejiang Literature Museum and Zhejiang Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum, as well as new venues for the Zhejiang Museum and Zhejiang Library.

For now, online reservations for the Zhijiang Pavilion of the Zhejiang Museum and the Zhejiang Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum are available. Visitors are recommended to book beforehand via the WeChat applet "Zhijiang Cultural Center."

The Zhijiang Pavilion of the Zhejiang Museum covers an area of 100,000 square meters, including about 32,000 square meters of exhibition space. It will fill the roles of collection, display, research, public experience and education.

The museum spent months moving collections from the previous Wulin Pavilion to the new building. In April, a livestream of the process of moving antiques drew 4,066,000 hits cumulatively, causing a stir online.

The new venue has some 4,180 antiques and 296 top national treasures on display. At present, five exhibitions are being shown, featuring celadons, ancient maritime artifacts, Song Dynasty (960-1279) heritage items, ink-wash paintings, and manuscripts and life stories of historical celebrities.

Zhijiang Cultural Center opens to visitors
Ti Gong

The Zhijiang Cultural Center is a public facility that serves as a hub for cultural and artistic activities in Hangzhou.

Shanghai Daily highly recommends you visit three well-known treasures, namely the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) wangongjiao (万工轿, bridal sedan), the Liangzhu yucong (良渚玉琮, the largest cylindrical jade item found in the Neolithic Liangzhu site), and the caifeng mingqi (彩凤鸣岐) – a Chinese seven-string zither made during the Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907). It is a rare opportunity to view them all.

The Zhejiang Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum is China's first large-scale comprehensive venue for craftsmanship. At present, 241 top-flight intangible cultural heritages found in Zhejiang Province are shown there, establishing a platform for 196 national-level inheritors to exhibit their skills that have been handed down for generations.

In the future, the museum intends to introduce more partners to further cultivate the economic value of the heritage.

The new premises for the Zhejiang Library are also ready to open. The library has collected 8 million books, including 820,000 books with rubbings and inscriptions that range from ancient texts of the Southern and Northern Dynasties (AD 420-581) through to those of the Republic of China (1912-1949).

Smart libraries

The new building has been equipped with the latest technologies to provide readers with smart services. For instance, virtual reality systems help visitors locate books quickly and precisely. The venue is set to be an example for other cities in building smart libraries.

Zhijiang Cultural Center opens to visitors
Ti Gong

An exhibition room dedicated to Qian Liu. Also known as King Qian, he was the founder of the Wuyue Kingdom during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period (AD 907-979) in Chinese history.

The Zhijiang Cultural Center is the centerpiece of the Zhijiang Cultural Industry Belt, of which the blueprint was unveiled by Zhejiang government in 2018. The center is expected to provide an engine of change to the development of Hangzhou's cultural and creative industries and highlight the ambition to keep Zhejiang at the cutting edge.

The Zhijiang belt nestles along the Qiantang River and includes Hangzhou's Shangcheng, Xihu, Binjiang, Xiaoshan and Fuyang districts. These boast a solid industrial foundation and enriched talent resources. Every participating county and district takes the belt construction as an unparalleled opportunity to keep itself at the cutting edge.

Following the blueprint, the Zhejiang and Hangzhou governments plan to further develop four industries – cartoons and video games, art creation, filmmaking, and digital culture, which include 32 programs and billions of yuan of investment.

With a dozen economic parks and a large number of cultural companies, the Zhijiang belt reached 96.3 billion yuan (US$13.2 billion) of added value in the cultural and creative industry last year. The current scale is 220 percent bigger than the expected scale revealed in 2018.

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