It's raining in Hangzhou, mutations fall. I am looking in vain for the Museum of Han Meilin in the labyrinth of the Botanical Garden. Disguised as a Breton fisherman, in a green hat too big for me.
On the road, cars and children in school uniforms, laughter and shouts: "What is your name?! Where do you come from?! My name is Jack, nice to meet you "A child is the clown and I am his partner in the show, a circle of children around me.
I escape and I hide under a porch. I understand that the children queue or perhaps only shelter? The front of the museum, two huge lion heads carved in stone, ferocious. I climb on the second floor of the beautiful museum of glass, white and black stone.
Downstairs, I hear screaming children. The second floor is an oasis of calm and green water. The blue parrot at the entrance, two women round, orange hair cascading forest.
The style resembles the Chinese print, plagiarized, diverted, modern, attractive and whimsical. Many animals, buffalo, roosters, elephants. Some monstrous animal sculptures, bronze green curves attract me. I stood there speechless, and soon I hear the children.
On the first floor, a spectacular lion painted purple and pink. The pandas, koalas, dogs, deer, pigs and monkeys smiling funny. The obsession of the cock, white fish and a bunch of silvery blue birds. Behind prehistoric animals in pencil or ink.
What is surprising are the feet of the symbols, dressed as characters: female star, grid, bow, primitive art of blue, gray, black, brown faded ...
In one room, dozens of small teapots gold, copper, bronze, glass, vine-shaped plugs, the twisted beaks, the aesthetic smile.
On the ground floor, an immense space is dedicated to beautiful sculptures that develop themes already glimpsed: the woman and the child or the woman-bird army of lions, and faces of Buddhist elephants.
Han Meilin was born in 1936 in Jinan, northern China. His work is multifaceted, an abundant expression of impressive creativity. Abused during the Cultural Revolution, it is now recognized worldwide after various exhibitions in the 90's in the United States, India, Malaysia ... He is the creator of the logo of the airline Air Asia and more recently, the designer of Fuwa, the mascots of the Beijing Olympics in 2008. A section of the museum is reserved for photos of construction showing his sculptures and urban settlements of several meters.
The artist is a passionate lover of Hangzhou, a mythical city to which he donated over 1000 works in 2005. The museum opens its doors in October 2005 and already the great diversity of his career and his research. Five years later, he made a second donation of 500 works to the museum, redesigned for the occasion. Designed like a facade, like the work of Han Meilin, combines the simplicity of traditional style to the understanding of Chinese modernism. Another museum opened in 2008 in Beijing which is dedicated to his work.
3 Taoyuan Ling, located in the heart of the botanical garden in Hangzhou
Open from 8:30am to 4:30pm
Entrance fee: 10 RMB
Tel: 0571 8797 2520