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Paper-cutting Exhibition on Confucius Starts World Tour
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An exhibition of more than 200 paper-cuttings featuring the life of ancient Chinese philosopher Confucius (551-479 BC) and his teachings began its world tour on June 16 in Jinan, capital of east China's Shandong Province.

Part of the ongoing 2006 Shandong International Cultural Industry Fair, the exhibition comprises three sections: the life of Confucius told through stories, the book of Lunyu (or The Analects of Confucius), and his apprentices.

"All the stories about Confucius are in the form of traditional Chinese paper cuttings, which took me about three years to complete," said artist Lu Xue.

Lu, secretary of the Hong Kong Association of Chinese Paper-cutting, was born in Tai'an City in Shandong and began to learn the craft at the age of six.

The exhibition also features paper-cuttings of well-known characters from Western stories and fairy tales.

Rita Fan (Hsu Lai-tai), president of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong, said at the opening ceremony: "The philosophical thought of courtesy and benevolence in Confucianism guided the ancient Chinese. We modern Chinese should still follow the philosophy and learn from it."

Chinese paper-cutting is believed to date back to the sixth century.

The exhibition will move to Hong Kong after Jinan, and thereafter to Japan, South Korea and Singapore. The tour is expected to last for about a year.

Confucius was the founder of Confucianism, which advocates the building of a harmonious society through an individual's self-refinement in manners and taste. It was promulgated by ancient Chinese rulers during the Western Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 25) and spread far and wide across East and South Asia.

(Xinhua News Agency June 20, 2006)

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