BMW China Culture Journey
“BMW promotes development of intangible cultural heritage”March 29th, 2018
As a leader of global premium automobile manufacturers, the BMW Group is constantly looking ahead. BMW Group not only integrates sustainability throughout its entire value chain, but also includes Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as an integral part of its sustainable development strategy, and in turn achieves the joint sustainable development of the corporation, of society and of the environment.
BMW China Culture Journey is an iconic BMW CSR program that aims to promote and to conserve the traditional Chinese culture as well as intangible cultural heritage through in-depth exploration, cultural exchanges and product exhibitions. This program integrates traditional Chinese culture, rich in history, into modern life using innovative methods, and the program therefore inspires sustainable development and demonstrates a successful example of corporate involvement in the conservation of intangible cultural heritage.
2017 BMW China Culture Journey’s Visit in Hunan
The intangible cultural heritage visit in Hunan took place from July 26 to August 4, during which two groups of members comprising journalists, intangible cultural heritage experts, cultural experts, designers and entrepreneurs visited 47 intangible cultural heritage items in 11 municipalities and prefectures across the Hunan Province. The South Route, with a focus on traditional craftsmanship, arts and drama, visited intangible cultural heritage items such as Hunan embroidery, Liling Underglazed Five-Color Porcelain, and the Kun Opera, whilst the North Route, with a focus on folk customs, vocal art forms and traditional music, visited intangible cultural heritage items including the Dragon Boat Festival celebration on Miluo River, Yu-Drum, and the Miao Minority’s Folk Song.
Guided by BMW’s strategic CSR, 2017 BMW China Culture Journey has successfully achieved the goals of the intangible cultural heritage visit in Hunan through a series of innovative initiatives: Firstly, ten inheritors with innovation needs and potential are selected, and will be sent to the Tsinghua BMW Innovation Center for Intangible Cultural Heritage Safeguarding for research and design training.
Secondly, the Intangible Cultural Heritage Crossover Incubation Program has been launched, which invites Intangible Cultural Heritage Crossover Creative Ambassadors from different specializations to collaborate with intangible cultural heritage inheritors to create works inspired by intangible cultural heritage items. Works created under this program will be displayed at the “BMW China Culture Journey Intangible Cultural Heritage Carnival” which will be held in Beijing in November to integrate intangible cultural heritage into modern life. 2017 BMW China Culture Journey will fuel intangible cultural heritage crossover innovations in the fields including music, fashion, gourmet and handicrafts.
Thirdly, following the great success of the “BMW China Culture Journey Sichuan Intangible Cultural Heritage Tour Guide” in 2016, BMW China Culture Journey will, in collaboration with Mafengwo, launch the “BMW China Culture Journey Hunan Intangible Cultural Heritage Tour Guide” in late 2017, to promote the intangible cultural heritage items of Hunan and to encourage young people to understand and experience the charm of intangible cultural heritage items up-close.
2017 BMW China Culture Journey Festival
The 2017 BMW China Culture Journey Festival opened for free for the public in Beijing from Nov. 10 until Nov.12. The Intangible Cultural Heritage Creative Ambassadors: Summer Jike (music), Sara Yun (fashion), Heymy (gourmet) and Gao Yiqiang (handicraft), together with inheritors, presented their crossover creative works at the Gala Night of the Festival. The BMW China Culture Journey Festival upgraded to a series of interactive experience events instead of static exhibitions from the past. Meanwhile, the 10 intangible cultural heritage inheritors selected from 2017 BMW China Culture Journey Visit in Hunan have successfully completed their studies at the Tsinghua BMW Innovation Center for Intangible Cultural Heritage Safeguarding. A grand graduation ceremony for these inheritors was held during the Gala Night. Subsequently, they, along with other inheritors from Innovation Center, displayed and sold their unique and creative works at the Festival.
As the finale of 2017 BMW China Culture Journey series innovation events, the Festival was held successfully with several innovative achievements of the Program exhibited. To help integrate intangible cultural heritage into modern life, BMW China Culture Journey continues to explore innovative models of intangible cultural heritage safeguarding, which is achieved in two approaches:
Innovative Communication to Promote Intangible Cultural Heritage
Following the tremendous success of “BMW China Culture Journey Sichuan Intangible Cultural Heritage Tour Guide” published in 2016, BMW China Culture Journey, in collaboration with the well-known travel website Mafengwo, continues to explore the crossover of “intangible cultural heritage + tourism” and therefore launched the second series of intangible cultural heritage-themed tour guide, “BMW China Culture Journey Hunan Intangible Cultural Heritage Tour Guide”, to encourage young people to visit Hunan and to experience up close the great charm of intangible cultural heritage. The tour guide uses detailed first-hand information to present a comprehensive and in-depth display of the rich and colorful intangible cultural heritage items available in Hunan. The guide is now available to view at the website and the APP of Mafengwo, as well as from other channels.
Innovative Methods to Promote the Use and Consumption of Intangible Cultural Heritage Works
In August of 2017, BMW China Culture Journey initiated the Intangible Cultural Heritage Crossover Incubation Program. After more than three months of incubation, the Program achieved several spectacular results. At the Gala Night, the ambassadors and inheritors jointly launched their first-ever stunning crossover creations to the public. A piece of crossover music fused with Hunan intangible cultural heritage elements: Ambassador Summer Jike, together with inheritors of Miao Geteng, developed the first-ever pop song which blends elements of Hunan’s intangible cultural heritage.
A set of crossover fashion pieces featuring Hunan’s profound intangible cultural heritage traditions: Ambassador Sara Yun has drew upon Hunan Embroidery, Dabujiang Embroidered Patchworks, Taoyuan Embroidery and Miao Silver Accessories, to design the “SARAYUN-Treasure”. This desirable set of fashion pieces, featuring strong cultural traditions and an avant-garde style, aims to illustrate the aesthetic charm of traditional Chinese culture to young people.
A set of crossover gourmet specialties integrating features of Hunan’s intangible cultural heritage: Ambassador Heymy has adopted the elements of Hunan local cuisine to present “a bite of intangible cultural heritage”. Subsequently, this series of crossover gourmet dishes will feature on the menus of the CHERCHEZ 10 Restaurant in Beijing and the Joy Café at BMW Experience Shanghai in Pudong to provide more opportunities for people to taste the crossover innovation.
A series of crossover handicraft works featuring core intangible cultural heritage techniques: BMW car owner representative Gao Yiqiang and inheritors have used traditional craftsmanship such as Tantou Handmade Papermaking to jointly design utensils for daily life, including tableware, hollowed light holders and vases. Such designs showcase to the public with the concept of “integrating intangible cultural heritage into modern life” at the Creative Lifestyle Showrooms during the Festival.
The 2017 BMW China Culture Journey Festival inviteed intangible cultural heritage inheritors from around China to proudly showcase and promote creative products which feature the beauty of intangible cultural heritage, in the way of handicraft bazaar, interactive experience and a range of other exciting formats for public engagement.