An enormous wooden sculpture of a lion now stands majestically in a Central Chinese city square, and the trip it took to get to the destination makes it all the more magnificent.
The Oriental Lion, as it has been called, was carved from a single redwood tree trunk over the spread of 3 years. Chinese architect Dengding Rui Yao, reportedly helped by over 20 people, started the project in Myanmar, where the carving can be done. Finally, when the magnificent beast was completed in December of 2015, it was then moved over 3000 miles to reach Wuhan’s Fortune Plaza Times Square. At 47.5 feet long, 16.5 feet high, and 13 feet wide, the Oriental Lion is s sight to behold.
Lions play a vital role in traditional Chinese culture. When Buddhism expanded from India to China, so did many of its figures, including the lion. Seen as protectors, lion statues became a common fitting at the gates of imperial palaces, including the mythical Forbidden City in Beijing.