Drones, 3D and VR help to brighten up the Spring Festival customs.

Illustration by Hang Dachuan/Global Times

Three years after the pandemic, during the recent Lunar New Year holiday (January 21-27), Chinese folk customs featuring a combination of music, light, red and high technology have been revitalized.

Folk music always plays an important role in creating a festive atmosphere during the Spring Festival. bamboo Suona The gong of Dazhou, Sichuan Province, southwest China, and the “water drum” and large cymbals, Guangdong Province, South China, are all distinctive folk instruments.

Folk songs of the Zhuang and Miao peoples living in the Zhuang Autonomous Region of Guangxi in southern China are also typical local customs during the festival.

Lighting is a must when it comes to festivals. In many parts of China, from the first day of the Lunar New Year to the 15th day of the Lantern Festival, lanterns are displayed to wish people a happy new year.

Red is also a characteristic of the Spring Festival. People dress in red, decorate their homes with red twins and paper-cut ornaments, or send children “red envelopes” full of money. Because this color symbolizes happiness and good luck. Thus, red has become an icon of traditional Chinese culture.
Apart from traditions, new customs have gradually formed today. The 2023 Spring Festival was highlighted with high-tech activities that enrich people’s knowledge of traditional Chinese culture.

For example, ice lanterns, a unique folk custom in Northeast China, now use modern light control, laser decoration, and 3D printing technology. Organizers of the famous Lantern Festival in Zigong, Sichuan Province, have also embraced digital technology to combine traditional and modern craftsmanship.

In Guizhou, Hunan and Jiangxi provinces, “drone plus laser” technology lights up the night sky in auspicious patterns, wishing local residents good luck. In large cities such as Beijing, Tianjin, and Shanghai, people enjoyed an immersive experience by viewing folklore exhibitions through 3D holograms, virtual reality, and augmented reality.

Folk customs are the treasures of Chinese traditional culture. However, with the development of modern society, people sometimes neglect them because they are not as attractive as contemporary art. However, the festival’s innovative approach has revived folk customs and given people a new appreciation for traditional culture.

At the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in October 2022, Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed the need to “ignite the nation’s cultural creativity and build a powerful source of inspiration to realize national rejuvenation.”

In fact, traditional culture has become the foundation of modern culture and has become an indispensable presence in people’s daily lives.

Modern culture provides people with a better cultural experience, so we need to develop new cultural forms based on tradition, and cultural creativity in the new era should focus on utilizing modern technology.

In this sense, the rejuvenation of Chinese New Year folk customs through high-tech means is a good example of Chinese cultural creativity, and is the best way for Chinese people to rediscover, experience and cherish folk customs.

Therefore, only by hearing, seeing and experiencing Chinese folk customs can the traditional Chinese culture be better integrated into people’s lives and transmitted.

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