Friendship of Guilin—Display of Museum Collection of Gifts Presented by Foreign Guests
Beautiful city Guilin, with its world-renowned glamorous landscape and profound historical and cultural accumulation, is one of the first batch of the 24 National Famous Historical and Cultural Cities announced by the State Council of China. Since the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Guilin has hosted over 160 state leaders, government heads, and goodwill missions and persons from all walks of life across the five continents, and had established sister city ties with cities from many countries, composing a chapter of friendship and peace in new China’s foreign exchange stage.
During international exchange, presenting gifts has become an international practice, so the Party and state leaders will always be presented with precious gifts during foreign business communications. The precious gifts, reflecting people’s love of Guilin, are the physical witness of the cooperation and communication between Guilin and the world.
So far, around 3,000 gifts have been collected by Guilin Museum, including gold and silver ware, jade and stone ware, ceramic ware, lacquer ware, ivory and bone objects, wooden ware, painting and photography and other kinds. They have become one of Guilin Museum’s collection resources with distinctive regional characteristics. Hereby, we select over 200 pieces (sets) of gifts, in order to commend friendship, cooperation and development.
Gifts from Political Leaders and Royal Families
With its unique natural landscape history and culture, Guilin gains the world acclaim. All of these make Guilin one of the cities in Guangxi which set up foreign affairs organizations at the earliest time and one of the first alternatives for hosting foreign friends.
Since the 1960s, over 160 national leaders and government heads have made special trip to Guilin. During their stay， they made sincere commendation to the fairyland, and left their footprints and gifts of friendship and peace in the grotesque and glamorous landscape. These precious gifts, owing to the identity of the givers and other factors, are marked with the imprints of international diplomatic etiquette, and also boast high historical and artistic value.
Gifts Presented by International Sister Cities
The establishment of sister-city relationship has become an extremely popular way of international communication between cities of different countries. In order to match up national diplomacy, Guilin established the first international sister city ties with Kumamoto of Japan, and then successively established international sister city ties with nine other cities in Oceania, America, Asia, and Europe, and set up friendly exchanges. Both cities, with the purpose of maintaining world peace, enhancing friendship and promoting common development, positively develop exchanges and cooperation in many fields, so as to realize learning from each other and complementing each other in advantages, and promoting the development of social economy. The activities of international sister cities set up a bridge of friendship, demonstrate the good expectation for human peace and friendship, and world progress and development. The foreign exchange and cooperation based on international sister cities are gradually becoming important international resources for Guilin’s expansion of opening to the outside world.
Gifts Presented by Foreign Delegations and Guests
Since the reform and opening up to the world, Guilin has opened her door to the world and met delegations from all walks of life throughout the world with its beautiful landscape and historical and humane glamour. Though presenting gifts, the goodwill missions from the five continents convey their wish of peaceful development. Gifts, though small, are fully loaded with friendship and hope when they arrive in Guilin after sailing across the ocean. They are also the bridge connecting people’s mind and a physical witness of the communication and fusion between Guilin and the world.
With distinct national characteristics and unique artistic style, gifts from the five continents reflect the production and living, culture and art, and other folk customs of ethnic groups.
Porcelain Plate Decorated with Swans and Gilded Rim;
Gift of Richard Milhous Nixon, Former President of America, 1976
Presented in the work is an absolutely lifelike posture of swans breeding and caring offspring, which creates a tranquil and peaceful atmosphere.
Bronze Statue of a Horsing Man；
Gift of Ahmadou Babatoura Ahidjo, President of Cameroon, 1977
Golden Key of Orlando;
Gift of Glenda Hood, Mayor of Orlando, U.S.A., 1990
Golden key of Orlando is the symbol of Orlando, which conveys the trust and friendship from Orlando to Guilin people.