Symbols are an important cultural aspect of the Lunar New Year holiday. During a time of family reunion and gathering with friends, houses are decorated with messages of happy greetings, and symbols that serve as a way to give blessings and welcome in the new year. The Golden State Warriors wanted to capture this meaningful expression with their rabbit sculpture, Bravery.
The traditional wave pattern at the bottom of the rabbit is matched with a lotus flower, signifying that every year will get better. The lucky bamboo and auspicious clouds represent good fortune and good luck. The Chinese knot along the arms represents happiness and peace. The moon echoes the image of the rabbit itself as this animal is said to derive its spirit from the moon. The plum blossom on the head symbolizes bravery, smoothness, peace, and longevity. The fai chun on the back of the rabbit reads, from left to right, 動如脫兔 – Move Like a Swift Rabbit (Wishing someone excellent health) and 恭贺新春 – a way of saying Happy New Year. The bridge on the chest signifies connection and community.
Artist Bio: Yiyang (Vito) Deng
Yiyang (Vito) Deng was born in Wuhan, China. Both of his parents worked as basic art educators in Wuhan for many years. When Yiyang was in elementary school, he followed his parents and moved to China’s new international city, Shenzhen. In this multicultural city, he studied photography and traditional Chinese ink painting with his father. He also began his formal art education in high school, during which he was exposed to and mastered drawing tools such as pencil, charcoal, gouache, acrylic, and oil, and built a strong foundation in art. This is Yiyang’s third year of study at the California College of Arts.