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Chinese, US children paint for Green Olympics
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Hundreds of Chinese and U.S. children exchanged their two giant paintings Saturday at the Beijing International Sculpture Park, with a common theme of environmental protection designed for the Green Olympics.

The U.S. environmental artist Robert Wyland and Chinese artist Yuan Xikun each worked with over 1,000 children from their countries to create giant paintings of around 80 square meters, symbolizing the unity for the upcoming Beijing Olympic Games.

The artwork created by Wyland and the U.S. children depicts three dolphins racing through the oceans, representing the Olympic motto -- "Faster, Higher, Stronger", said Steve Creech, program director of the Wyland Foundation, non-profit organization founded in 1993 by Wyland.

Around the dolphins are messages that the U.S. children wrote to the Chinese buddies, such as "Wishing you good luck for the green Olympics." "Go green in 2008." "Best of luck," just list a few.

While Yuan painted two polar bears with a hope of protecting the ice of the earth. The Chinese children did the same as their U.S. counterparts, putting down their words on the paintings, saying "Let's give the best wishes to the Beijing Olympics."

"Environmental protection has no boundaries," Yuan said.

A 7-year-old girl, Zhang Ruoxi, told Xinhua, pointing her drawing of a tree, that "we will have no place to live if we do not protect the environment." She also called on all people to love and protect the planet.

The two paintings will be on a tour in both the United States and China. "We would like to go all cities (in China) before the Olympics," Steve added.

Wyland has created in 15 countries and regions across the world 96 giant paintings on ocean. He was named an official artist for the U.S. Olympic team and was also appointed on March 24 by U.S. President George W. Bush as a special envoy for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games.

The exchange ceremony was also witnessed by He Zhenliang, honorary chairman of China's Olympic Committee and executive member of the Beijing Organizing Committee for Olympic Games (BOCOG).

(Xinhua News Agency April 20, 2008)

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