Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Red lanterns at the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, Vancouver

On yet another of Vancouver's gray late afternoons in December, I visited our city's bustling Chinatown.  There is a very beautiful and calm oasis within the very heart of our city and its historic Chinatown, the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden.  Brochures say that the design recalls gardens in the city of Suzhou during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).  Completed in 2004, this wonderful garden is unknown to many of Vancouver's visitors.

The website indicates that there is a Winter Solstice Lantern Festival on Dec. 21st, but since that popular event draws large crowds, I decided to photograph fewer lanterns while there were virtually no other visitors.  There was still a bit of ambient lighting and the normal lanterns were lit.

The garden is built around water which moves gently and is purposefully made slightly cloudy, a shade of jade green which best creates the desired atmosphere and helps to reflect plants and buildings.  Jade is thought to be symbolic of wealth and power.  Since I was shooting shortly before sunset, the photos cannot show this aspect.

Just one final photo to remind us that this garden is indeed surrounded by Vancouver.