Australia: Ties Between Australia and China

Submitted by Harrison Crum on the 2020 spring semester study abroad program in Sydney, Australia…

Australia values their ties with Asia, in particular China, and one way in which this is best exemplified is through their Chinese Lunar New Year celebration held throughout the city of Sydney. Since I arrived, I have seen countless advertisements preparing the Australian citizens for these celebrations. Here in Sydney, there is a huge three-week festival to celebrate the Year of the Rat. All throughout the city there is live entertainment, performers, golden rat robots, games, lion dancers, markets, and food trucks. In particular, in the Circular Quay area there are the Lunar Lanterns. The Lunar Lanterns are a creative, contemporary interpretation of a centuries-old tradition. Twelve pieces of giant artwork are on display, each is a different animal that represents a creature of the zodiac. It was such a great opportunity to experience a part of the culture of China, and at the same time, the relationship between Australia and China. The artwork was absolutely beautiful, the attention to detail was astonishing. And the fact that the city displayed these works of art in one of the most populated parts of the city shows the strong ties between the two countries. While America plays a large role in most countries around the world, it has been very interesting to witness the interactions between cultures that I am not native to, which is obviously something hard to do when living in my home country. Australia has relationships with various countries and I greatly anticipate being able to view them.

The Lunar Lanterns in the Circular Quay area – rabbit zodiac creature