The Shanghai Museum of Sun Yat-sen's Former Residence is inviting young people from the Chinese mainland and Taiwan to contribute ideas to create souvenirs for the museum.
Pictures of nearly 30 precious cultural relics collected by the museum will be available for reference during the design contest, which runs through the end of this year, to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Sun's birth in November.
The relics include the medical devices that Sun used when he practiced medicine, photos taken when he was commander of the Republic of China's army and a photo of Sun and Soong Ching Ling when they married in Japan in October 1915.
Contest rules can be found on the website of Shanghai's Revolutionary Committee of the Chinese Kuomintang, which held the contest with the Shanghai Sun Yat-sen and Soong Ching Ling Cultural Relics Management Committee, and the Research Center of Creative Industry under the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.
"We hope that Sun is not only a political figure but a cultural symbol for universal fraternity and unremitting efforts. We hope the young generation from both the Chinese mainland and Taiwan can interpret the relics from their own perceptions and show original designs that meet the needs of the times and are popular with people," said the director of the museum's department of cultural relics protection, who would give only his surname, Wang.
The good ideas will be turned into souvenirs, he said.
Sun and Soong lived in the residence on Xiangshan Road in downtown Shanghai from 1918 to 1925, when Sun died. Soong continued to live there until 1937.
Wang said the country encourages museums to develop creative souvenirs, and both the Palace Museum in Beijing and Shanghai Museum set excellent examples.
The Palace Museum, also known as the Forbidden City, began to introduce creative souvenirs two years ago and won wide applause. They include earphones that look like a string of coral beads worn by officials in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and refrigerator magnets depicting an emperor and empress as cute cartoons.
"We used to hold conservative ideas for national-level precious cultural relics, and emphasized protection rather than development and utilization. It was quite a breakthrough when the Palace Museum developed innovative and popular souvenirs," Huang Yaping, director of Shanghai Sun Yat-sen and Soong Ching Ling Cultural Relics Management Committee, was quoted as saying by the paper.cn.