Sunday, September 9, 2018


Here is a fun weekend activity for Metro Detroit area families to enjoy that provides an interesting way to teach kids about a different culture from another part of the world in an entertaining way. The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) is hosting a Taiwanese arts and culture festival on Saturday and Sunday (September 15 - 16, 2018) from noon to 4 pm each day. Taiwanese Festival activities are FREE with museum admission, which is complimentary for residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties and DIA members. The festival is part of special Asian arts and cultures programs leading up to the opening of the DIA's newly expanded Asian art galleries on November 4, 2018. Festivities will include movies, performances, cooking demonstrations, traditional arts and crafts, puppets to play with and educational displays.

A highlight of the event for me is an appearance by Yenchih Huang who is a professional LEGO brick builder certified by the toy company. This master builder has worked with the LEGO Group since 2009 and has created numerous life-size brick sculptures for the company that have been on display at events and exhibitions in Asia. Yenchih Huang will display a large “Chaotian Temple LEGO” and demonstrates Taiwanese-style LEGO-building at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday in the Great Hall during this DIA event.

There will be a cooking demonstration at 2:15 p.m. in the Crystal Gallery CafĂ© where Shih-Wen Wu demonstrates how to make traditional Taiwanese pork dumplings and will provide copies of the recipe. National Chinese Orchestra Taiwan will be performing at 3 p.m. in the Detroit Film Theatre on September 15 and at that time in the Rivera Court on September 16. Enjoy a birds-eye view of the island nation by viewing the film “Beyond Beauty: Taiwan From Above” that will be playing in the Detroit Film Theatre at Noon on both days of the festival.

Kids will also enjoy these hands-on activities taking place from Noon–4 p.m. throughout the weekend in the DIA's Student Lunchroom:

  •  Dough figurine: Make a simple dough animal using basic tools.
  •  Lantern making & door gods coloring: Create a lantern decorated with Chinese characters that typically accompany the display of door gods and color your own door god. 
  • Taiwan puzzles: Learn about Taiwan’s geography by playing with Taiwan maps and landmark puzzles. 

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