Jumping into the year of the Rabbit!

Date(s) - 25/01/2023
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


We will start with a presentation by acclaimed author and speaker, Patricia Bjaaland Welch, who will share some fascinating insights on the history and iconography of the Year of the Rabbit, exploring how ideas and symbols travel and influence cultures as they spread. This will be followed by Q & A and discussion about how to apply what we have learned in our work as interculturalists.

All are welcome for this free event.  Please share this invitation with friends, family and colleagues.

Optional: we invite you all to bring/wear something traditional to share with the group as well as any interesting cultural traditions or stories behind them.

We hope that this event can inspire you to have a fantastic year ahead – look forward to seeing you there!

Presentation: The Year of the Rabbit
Speaker: Patricia Bjaaland Welch

Historians believe the original zodiac came from Hellenised Egypt, possibly introduced to China from Bactria. As a result, one of its more charming 4-footed members has a longer and richer history of symbols and meanings than you might realize. Our speaker will trace their appearance from the Temple of Dendera in ancient Egypt to coconut scrapers in today’s Thailand, with stories from “The White Hare of Inaba” to the Throne of Maximianus and the “Madonna of the Rabbit” to China’s mixer of elixirs of immortality.

Patricia Bjaaland [Bee-yo-lan] Welch — is a former Lecturer in Chinese history & art (at Boston University and the University of Oslo, Norway) and after a career in Asia in the private sector as regional head of marketing for American Express, the consultancy McKinsey, ABN AMRO Bank and others, returned to her academic love: Asian studies. Today she is an independent art historian and author of several books including Oxford University Press’ Chinese New Year and Tuttle’s Chinese Art: A Guide to Motifs and Visual Imagery, and is a frequent contributor to Arts of Asia magazine. Over the years, she has led more than 16 special interest study tours in China (including the Silk Road) and Southeast Asia and hopes to continue doing so when possible. She has homes in both Bangkok and in Singapore, where she has resided for the past 28 years.


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