"What's this? What are they used for in China?" It was a Sunday, and at the Niavaran Culture Center in north Tehran, two young Iranian women were asking Fan Xiaomei, a paper-cut artist from northwest China's Shaanxi Province.
Two Iranian women look at paintings by Chinese peasants at an exhibition during the Chinese Culture Week in Tehran, capital of Iran, Sept. 25, 2011. The Chinese Culture Week kicked off here on Thursday to mark the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the diplomatic ties between China and Iran.
After being told what Chinese paper-cuts were used for, the two women's curiosity was still not satisfied. "Are these paper-cuts made by you here?"
Xiaomei snatched up a piece of paper and deftly started to show off her paper-cutting skills with a pair of scissors. Suddenly, a delicate paper butterfly appeared.
It was the fourth day of the Chinese Culture Week that opened Thursday at the Niavaran Culture Center to mark the 40th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and Iran in 1971.
In the past few days, many have Iranians poured into the Niavaran Culture Center, where a lot of Chinese cultural heritage was showcased, including a clay miniature from Fengxiang county near the ancient city of Xi'an, ladle masks, leather silhouettes, Shaanxi peasants' paintings and Chinese paper-cuts.
A local visitor asked if these artifacts were for sale because she wanted to buy some. "I like China. I want to go to China, but I heard a Chinese visa is not easy to get," she said, inviting a Xinhua reporter to visit her family.
During the culture week, a delegation from Shaanxi province, whose capital city is the world-famous historical city of Xi'an, has performed Qin Opera shows in different locations in Tehran, attracting many locals.
During the opening ceremony of the Chinese Culture Week on Thurday, lots of Iranians went to the Niavaran Culture Center to take part in the celebration and watch programs with Chinese cultural elements.
The famous Little Plum Blossom Troupe of Shaanxi Traditional Chinese Opera Research Institute performed Qin Opera, a kind of traditional local opera in Shaanxi, which proved to be a huge success.
The Little Plum Blossom Troupe has visited many foreign countries in Asia, Europe, Africa and North America to perform Qin Opera shows.
Qin Opera music, opera excerpts General Lu Wenlong with Double Spears,Defeating General Jiao Zan and At the Crossroads and stunts of Qin Opera were performed.
"It's wonderful, I like it very much," an Iranian artist told Xinhua after watching the Qin Opera performances. He asked Xinhua reporter to write his name in Chinese and the two words "Good" and "Love."
Numerous pictures and photographs were also shown to the public during the culture week, including some taken by Xinhua photographers, representing important historical moments regarding bilateral ties between China and Iran.
Chinese martial arts performed by Iran's International Red Dragon Wushu Association, whose members are all Iranians, also received cheers and applause.
Masoud Jafari, president of the association, is fascinated by Chinese martial arts and has practiced Wushu for 22 years. Out of his love for the world-famous Wushu master Li Xiaolong or Bruce Lee, he named himself Yun Xiaolong and also gave Chinese names to his students.
The Chinese Culture Week ends Tuesday.