Calligraphy shows youth as good as their word

Updated: 2013-08-28 20:01

By Sun Ye (

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In the age of keyboards and touch-screens, calligraphy's stylish strokes can still enchant the young, as was seen during an international event in Beijing.

The First "Sino-Culture Cup", an international youth calligraphy contest, saw a handful of winners from home and abroad. The result was announced on Sunday during the International Cultural Festival for Chinese Calligraphy.

"Chinese calligraphy has a kind of beauty that's hard to put into words," said Saana Virtanen from Finland, the only winner from outside China.

"It's a delicate and flowing balance of black and white, two colors with so many variations," she told China Daily. "Writing the strokes is liking dancing to me."

The exchange student of East Asian Studies in Renmin University of China has been learning Chinese for five years.

Her advice for mastering the art is knowing your subject fully.

"You have to first know the meaning of each character and the functions of each radical."

Li Yifan, another winner and a middle-school student from Henan province, said learning the art for eight years taught him righteousness.

"Besides appreciating the dignity and beauty of calligraphy, one should behave the way one writes, that is, with integrity.

"We have to try understanding Chinese calligraphy from inside, its aesthetics is different from the one we're used to, " said Nicola Piccioli, chairman at the FeiMo Contemporary Calligraphy Cultural Association from Italy.

"Calligraphy will lead the search for truth, kindness and beauty," he said.

"The Chinese characters show the character of its people," said Han Qide, vice-president of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference and a calligraphy aficionado.

"All young people should learn to write them well."