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Private Garden Reappears in Famous Garden City

SUZHOU, July 9 -- The first private garden built by a painter shows up in this city, famous for its delicately built gardens in ancient times, after the tradition of building private gardens was discontinued for half a century.

In a typical ancient style, the Cuiyuan Garden is much smaller than its 60-strong splendid predecessors, some of which have been listed as the World Cultural Heritage Sites by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization last year.

Yet the Cuiyuan bears all necessities for a traditional garden: buildings of varied shapes, a creek, rockery, flowers and trees.

Cai Tinghui, owner of the garden, is deputy director of the Academy of Chinese Paintings of Suzhou. He designed and instructed the one and-a-half-year construction of the garden.

The 53-year-old Cai said that by carving stone statues, seals and kettles, he earned more than 100,000 yuan every over the past two decades. And now he put all his earnings into building the garden.

Cai's garden is a milestone marking ordinary people's renewed interest in having an artistic residence, said the city's gardening bureau director Xu Wentao.

"We have many people who are much richer than Cai, and we would encourage them to do the same," the official said.


-- source: Xinhua News Agency


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