It’s becoming more and more evident the Chinese have a growing fascination with the United States' current president. This is particularly curious since the tensions are strained between the U.S. and China, ever since Donald Trump's controversial call to Taiwanese president Tsai In-wen — which flew in the face of the long-held ‘One China’ policy. However this has not diminished the level of interest, the Chinese find in the new Leader of the Free World.
In fact, when it come to Chinese birds, there are at least two that bear a striking resemblance to the president. One is a real bird — a Golden Pheasant who resides at the Hangzhou Safari Park in the Eastern China Region. The other is a 23-foot sculpture designed by illustrator and animator Casey Latiolais.
Latiolais, a 30 yr-old American, noted in a telephone interview that he completed the design in early November for Beijing Reliance Commercial Land, a real estate company that was commissioned through Behance, a website where artists post their portfolios. Mr. Latiolais said the company had asked only for a statue to commemorate the Year of the Rooster but did not mention Mr. Trump.
Latiolais, declined to comment on why he had given the rooster Trump-like features. But he said he had been surprised by the size of the final product, which is made of fiberglass.
Using a Trumpism to describe how surprised he was, he exclaimed: “This was way more yuge than I expected,” he wrote on Twitter.
It’s hard not to see the similarities, particularly since Trump’s bushy eyebrows and signature pompadour are overtly accented. It was installed outside the North America N1 Art Shopping Center in the northern Chinese city of Taiyuan, and was completed just a month before Mr. Trump’s inauguration.
The statue immediately went viral on all social media channels and replicas of the statue are on sale in a number of sizes. Taboo, an online shopping bazaar produced a 32-foot inflatable Trump-rooster which was advertised for a whopping $1725.
Elsewhere, the Yifang Inflatables Chinese factory has been doing brisk business selling giant inflatable roosters as well — some as tall as 16 feet based — all based on Latiolais’ design.
Wei Qing, owner of the factory in Jiaxing, said they have sold around 100 of the roosters, in sizes from 7 to 16 feet tall, to shopping centers in mainland China and Taiwan. Wei said some customers think the rooster resembles Mr. Trump but that the manufacturers refused to comment.
The social media sensation comes as China prepares to celebrate the lunar Year of the Rooster starting Jan. 28, the country’s most important traditional holiday.
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