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China Story - Suzhou Poetic Lifestyle

Jan 06, 2017


WASHINGTON, DC, USA - In honor of the closing celebration of China – U.S. Tourism Year, which was launched by President Obama and President Xi and took place during 2016, the Suzhou Municipal Tourism Bureau and Chinese photographer Mr. Steve Zhao hosted a photo exhibition at the (Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center) from November 30, 2016 until December 7, 2016. The retrospective entitled “China Story - Suzhou Poetic Lifestyle,” featured a rarely seen combination of extremely high technical ability and an aesthetic intensity, which included 60 color photographs from Mr. Zhao’s book of the same title, as well as a large number of images that have never been publicly exhibited. The opening night event occurred on November 29, 2016 and included an appearance by Chinese Ambassador to the United States, Mr. Cui Tiankai, members of the media, and the local tourism community.

In tribute to Suzhou’s natural beauty and cultural heritage, Mr. Zhao’s collection included remarkable portraits that captured Chinese people conducting daily activities and practicing centuries old traditions such as Kunqu Opera and creating local arts and crafts including jade carvings. It also showcased iconic locations such as the famous Suzhou gardens – nine of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Other featured images showcased the beautiful water towns including the Grand Canal, typical Su cuisine, and various natural aspects of the city.

Located 60 miles west of Shanghai, Suzhou has been home to numerous writers, artists, and scholars of the past and present. Perhaps the most familiar cultural figure from Suzhou within the North American market is Leoh Ming Pei, better known as the world famous architect I.M. Pei, who grew up in Suzhou and designed the Suzhou Museum as tribute to his love and admiration for this spectacular city. Mr. Zhao dedicated the exhibition and his book to I.M. Pei as homage to Pei’s upcoming 100th birthday in April 2017.

For more information about Mr. Zhao’s work, please visit, and for more information on Suzhou, please visit

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