Hong Kong balloon artist sets Guinness World Record with largest balloon loong in Tuen Mun

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2nd March 2024 – (Hong Kong) During the festive Chinese New Year celebrations, a remarkable event took place at Tuen Mun Town Plaza in Hong Kong. A colossal balloon loong, measuring over 40 meters long, gracefully glided through the three-story atrium, capturing the attention and awe of onlookers. This magnificent artwork was officially recognised by the Guinness World Records as the largest balloon loong in the world.

The loong, also known as the Chinese dragon, holds great cultural significance within Chinese traditions, symbolising resilience, dynamism, and vitality. Crafted from an astonishing 38,000 balloons, the record-breaking loong shimmered with golden hues, reflecting both power and elegance.

Renowned balloon artist Wilson Pang, with over a decade of experience in the craft, had long nurtured a desire to create a loong-shaped balloon. Pang explained the significance of the loong in Chinese folklore, stating, “According to legend, the loong is associated with rain. As good weather is essential for bountiful crops, the Chinese people have revered the dragon since ancient times, inspiring numerous idioms and blessings.”

Given that this year is the Year of the Loong, Pang swiftly collaborated with the shopping mall to bring his vision to life. He formed a team of 60 individuals, including fellow balloon artists, students from the City University of Hong Kong, and a secondary school, to ensure meticulous execution.

Pang emphasized the importance of precision, stating, “The loong is a totem of the Chinese people and holds profound meaning, so the production process had to be rigorous.” Extensive research and data collection preceded the crafting of the loong. Pang encountered the most significant challenge in creating the eyes, iterating through more than ten drafts for each eye until he achieved satisfaction.

Initially aiming to set a record with a loong exceeding 10 meters, Pang and his team were surprised when Guinness officials specified a minimum length of 33 meters without any additional structural support. Undeterred, the team embarked on a new endeavor, working tirelessly around the clock. Eventually, they completed a breathtaking 41.77-meter-long balloon loong, devoid of any underlying framework.

The Guinness certification officer commended the team’s achievement, hailing it as one of the most delicate and intricate balloon artworks ever created. The announcement of the new world record was met with enthusiastic applause from the team members.

Prior to his balloon artistry, Wilson Pang practiced as a magician. However, his fascination with balloons grew after witnessing the joy they brought to children’s birthday parties. Determined to hone his skills, Pang traveled the world, learning from various teachers and continuously improving his craft.

Pang’s exceptional balloon works have garnered accolades in the United States and set local records in places like Singapore. Achieving a world record in his hometown of Hong Kong was a dream come true for him. “This is the most memorable work I’ve ever done. It is very meaningful,” Pang expressed with heartfelt gratitude.

The exhibition of the record-breaking loong attracted throngs of visitors, who marvelled at its beauty and grandeur. Pang’s social media page overflowed with positive comments, with spectators describing his creation as “beautiful,” “amazing,” and “spectacular.” In appreciation of the audience’s support, Pang printed 5,000 postcards featuring the loong and arranged a meet-and-greet session at the mall.

Pang shared his aspirations, stating, “Delivering a warm, loving, and positive message to Hong Kong society is something I always strive for.” Recognising the importance of providing opportunities to the younger generation, he specifically invited college and high school students to participate in the project. Pang’s goal is to pass on his knowledge and expertise, nurturing a new generation of balloon art champions.

Growing up in Hong Kong, where Eastern and Western cultures intertwine, Wilson Pang contemplated ways to interpret the beauty of Eastern culture through the medium of balloon art, originating from the West. With a smile, he expressed his balloon dream of introducing balloon works that showcase the richness of Chinese culture to the world.