Mark your calendars for Think!Chinatown’s Lunar New Year festivities! Think!Chinatown will host a series of workshops and parties to celebrate the prosperous Year of the Wood Dragon.
New Year celebrations in Chinatown have always been a blend of traditional Chinese customs with new rituals adopted by the diaspora community. Since 2019, Think!Chinatown has commissioned artists to interpret the concept of the lantern as part of our annual Lantern Artist-In-Residency to celebrate the Lantern Festival and the New Year. Lanterns have a long cultural history in China and are of particular importance during Lunar New Year, with the Lantern Festival marking the final day of New Year celebrations. Our lantern art installation adds to the grassroots festivities of Chinatown by inserting our feminine energy amongst the traditionally male-dominated lion dancing celebrations.
Think!Chinatown-produced events are free to the public with the exception of sliding scale tickets for the guided workshops. Please check listings to see if reservations are required for certain events. Find the full calendar and event details at: www.thinkchinatown.org/lny
“Walking with Lions and Other Chinatown New Year Traditions”
Think!Chinatown is proud to present a captivating black-and-white film photography exhibition by Edward Cheng. The solo show, titled “Walking with Lions and Other Chinatown New Year Traditions 伴獅巡埠-過年習俗” offers an interior view of the vibrant Lunar New Year celebrations in Manhattan’s iconic Chinatown. For more than two decades, Cheng has chronicled Manhattan Chinatown’s Lunar New Year celebrations in black-and-white film. Using his 35mm, medium format camera, Cheng documents the unique blend of NYC Chinatown-specific rituals and historic traditions, showcasing the cultural resiliency of a diasporic community that has built a home in America. The show also features guest artist Warren King’s “Lion Dancer, 2024”, a sculptural piece made out of corrugated cardboard, an homage to those who preserve our cultural traditions, inspired by the red lacquer carvings of the Ming and Qing dynasties.
The exhibition will run from January 17 to February 25, 2024, at Think!Chinatown’s Studio at 1 Pike St. Gallery hours are free and open to the public on Thursdays and Fridays from 3-6PM. An artist talk moderated by the executive director of Think!Chinatown, Yin Kong, will be on February 1, 6-8pm. The closing party for the show will be on February 25, 6-8pm. Find more info about the exhibit at www.thinkchinatown.org/
Think!Chinatown Produced Events:
Lunar New Year Papercut Decorations: Hands-on Workshops w/ Ling Tang
Jan 27, 2-3:15PM & 4-5:15PM at Think!Chinatown’s Studio (1 Pike St)
Get into the Lunar New Year spirit and prepare your home for the prosperous Year of the Wood Dragon! Make your own chuanghua/window flowers papercut art 窗花剪紙 and dragon decorations with artist Ling Tang in two hands-on workshops. Session 1 is family-friendly, for those who are interested in exploring the world of arts and crafts and traditional Chinese folk art, while session 2 is for those who already have some papercutting experience or are already comfortable with arts and crafts. Tickets required – session 1 and 2.
Rituals & Altars: a Community Workshop for the New Year w/ Alison Kuo Feb 4, 3-4:30PM at Think!Chinatown’s Studio (1 Pike St)
Learn about traditions and rituals of the Lunar New Year as the Think!Chinatown team shares practices observed in Chinatown and in their own homes. Deepen your understanding about offerings and symbology you might see around this time of year. We’ll then discuss how these traditions might be relevant to our lives now and how they have been adapted for secular use for diasporic homes. Artist Alison Kuo will lead us through the practice of building altars communally. Tickets required – details TBA.
Lunar New Year 初一: Lantern Reveal Feb 10, 11AM-1PM, Mott Street
Soar into the prosperous Year of the Wood Dragon with us! The first day of the Lunar New Year in Chinatown will be at maximum 热闹 “hot and loud” festivities with lion dancing, confetti, and lots of friends and neighbors about. The T!C crew will join in on the festivities on Mott Street with a reveal of our annual Lantern Artist-in-Residency project. Come find us parading up and down the street with the new lantern!
Super Saturday Lantern Celebration Feb 17, 11AM-1PM, Mott Street
Catch the T!C crew and T!C’s Lantern Artist-in-Residence parading this year’s specially commissioned lantern on Mott Street on Super Saturday. Enjoy the lion dancing and confetti with family and friends!
Lunar New Year Teahouse: Bai Nian 拜年 at T!C’s Studio Feb 18, 2-5PM, Think!Chinatown’s Studio (1 Pike St)
Celebrate Lunar New Year with friends & family at T!C’s cozy community studio! Folk artists will demonstrate and sell their traditional crafts. Make your rounds in our pop-up teahouse to wish everyone a happy new year with freshly brewed tea and prosperity tray goodies.
ABOUT THINK!CHINATOWN ~ Think!Chinatown is a place-based intergenerational non-profit in Manhattan’s Chinatown, working at the intersection of storytelling, arts, neighborhood engagement, and creative placekeeping. We believe the process of listening, reflecting and celebrating develops the community cohesion and trust necessary to work on larger neighborhood issues. By building strength from within our neighborhood, we can shape better policies and programs that define our public spaces, celebrate our cultural heritage and innovate how our collective memories are represented. T!C is the team powering the Chinatown Night Market, Chinatown Block Parties, and Chinatown Arts Festival. Learn more at www.thinkchinatown.org
Think!Chinatown’s 2024 Lunar New Year programming is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. This program is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Additional leadership support for Think!Chinatown is generously provided by the Andrew Mellon Foundation, and many individual friends and donors.