Saturday, 9 February 2013

happy year of the snake

China, image credit: Hao Qunying/Xinhua
According to the Chinese calendar, today marks the lunar
new year's eve: 1.3 billion people from China and more
than 40 million Chinese around the world will celebrate
Chinese New Year, the Year of the Snake, actually the
most important of traditional Chinese holidays 
that's also known as the 'Spring Festival'.

Canada, image credit: CNW Group/Canada Post
Papua New Guinea, design by Siobhan McDevitt/IGPC
Chinese traditions concerning New Year celebrations
vary from place to place, yet everywhere people bought
presents, food, clothing and decorations as well as
countless bus, train and airline tickets to hurry home
to catch the New Year with big family gatherings.

Togo Republic, design by Siobhan McDevitt/IGPC
Serbia, by Serbian Post
New Zealand, design by Bananaworks, Auckland
Windows and doors are decorated in red paper-cuts
and 'good fortune', 'happiness' or 'longevity' couplets
while firecrackers will explode tonight all over China
mainland and all the countries with significant Chinese
populations including Italy, mostly in neighboring Prato
where 13,056 Chinese residents were 
officialy listed at the end of 2011.

Turks & Caicos, design by Siobhan McDevitt/IGPC
Antigua & Barbuda, design by Siobhan McDevitt/IGPC
Australia's Christmas Island stamps highlightng the
transition between the paper-cut motif into calligraphy
The water snake is the sixth sign in the 12-year cycle
of animals signs used for dating the years in the Chinese
zodiac and it's a symbol of wisdom, caution and romance;
those born in 'snake years' are said to be 
intelligent and cunning.

Liechtenstein, by Liechtensteinische Post AG
Gibraltar, design by Stephen Perera/Gibraltar Stamps
I thought to welcome the Year of the Snake by collecting
some of its pictorial representations, namely the ones in
new postage stamps issued from many world countries.
I'm not a stamp collector yet I love illustrations and I dare
say that all of them look extremely impressive through
a scad of different styles ranging from traditional Chinese
paper-cuts, calligraphic and ink-wash designs to 
extremely realistic and graphically stylized.
The whole world greets the New Year!

Taiwan's first day of issue, by Chunghwa Post

1 comment:

  1. What a collection!
    China, Serbia and Lichtenstein - favourites :D .