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Step Inside a Multicolored Wonderland of Handmade Chinese Lanterns

Light installations, including a dragon over 200' in length, featuring thousands of LEDs, illuminate a London park.

Image courtesy of Magical Lantern Festival

Over the last few weeks, London has been playing host to its first ever Chinese lantern festival, the Magical Lantern Festival, featuring 52 giant tableux handmade by specialists in China and shipped over to the UK. The lanterns, ranging from animals and mushrooms, lotus flowers, plants, chariots, and a dragon that's over 200' long, are spread out over 65 acres of gardens at Chiswick House.


The entire collection took around three years to complete. Each lantern is cut by hand from silk, attached to metal frames, and then the lights are placed inside. Around 60,000 LEDs are used in the entirety of these installations.

The result is some psychedelic eye-candy and is not only a celebration of the many Chinese residents in London who have been enjoying the Chinese new year (currently Year of the Monkey), but also of over 2,000 years of the Chinese lantern festival, which takes place on the 15th day of the first month of the Chinese lunar calendar. This year it fell on February 22, and brings an end to the Chinese New Year celebrations.

Check out some of the handcrafted sculptures below:

All images courtesy of Magical Lantern Festival

The Magical Lantern Festival will be on through March 6. Click here for more information.


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