Dr. Li-ling Hsiao, an associate professor of Chinese language and literature at UNC, was happy to showcase the guqin to a crowd gathered in Ackland Art Museum on Sunday.
The guqin is a seven-string, widely-respected traditional instrument. It carries a peaceful, spiritual sound. Hsiao describes it as “the most important in defining the culture of Chinese scholars.”
Hsiao is one of three performers in conjunction with the Ackland Art Museum’s exhibition "Court and Capital: Art from Asia’s Greatest Cities." The exhibit, on display until Dec. 10, explores the customs and fashions of major cities and cultural centers of Asian countries, from ancient times to the present. The performances are meant to bring attention and perspective to the exhibit.
“You can come back to the art and see it in a new light,” said Allison Portnow Lathrop, the Ackland’s public programs manager.
Hsiao sees the performance series and the exhibit as an opportunity for people to connect with their own culture, or to be exposed to art they are completely unfamiliar with. For sophomore Emma Li Tsai, who attended the performance for her Chinese culture class, this was the case.