What’s black, white, and green all over? Taiwan as Panda-monium sweeps over the island. Not too long ago, the Taipei Zoo announced the birth of its new baby Panda, Yuan Zai. Over Chinese New Year, she was released into the public exhibit and lines swelled as everyone eagerly waited to see the panda cub.
Just when residents thought the panda mania was going to die down, panda art took to the streets. Known as the ‘Panda World Tour’, Paulo Grangeon created a display of 1600 papier-mâché pandas to represent the number of pandas left in the wild. The tour hopes to increase awareness and action in order to protect the giant panda. Part of a larger bio-diversity movement, these 1600 papier-mâché pandas have been setting up cute displays all over Taipei. Closing down a street near Zhongxiao Dunhua MRT and now moving into the Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall grounds. 200 Formosa bears were also added into the party!
On the first day at the Memorial Hall, crowds filtered in to see this large grouping of pandas. As pandas are solo creatures in the wild, this is the biggest panda party yet! Children, adults, and even dogs dressed in the bear-y best to capture these cute creations.
Even the past few rainy day clouds couldn’t help but to break up a bit to let sun-rays through on these smiling pandas.
Taiwan is no stranger to cheerful displays of art. Just a few months, a large rubber duck had been making its way through the waterways of the island. Walking in the stores or down the lanes of the night market, visitors can find clothes, accessories, and gifts that adorn the dapper giant duck. Florentijn Hofman, artistic creator of the duck, explains his vision for the project as an intention to introduce some joy and laughter into our everyday lives. Based on the smiles spread across the faces of the locals as these posed with the giant rubber duck, I’d say that Florentijn Hofman managed to do just that!
If you find yourself in Taiwan the next couple of days, make a small stop to see the Panda World Tour. While the exhibit may only be here a fleeting moment, hopefully giant pandas in the wild will be around to stay.