Art Spotlight: Wong Tai Sin Zodiac Statues

Year of the dragon. Jenny Jones/Lonely Planet Images/Getty

Our recent podcast episode "Chinese Zodiac: Superstition, Economics & Destiny" explores astrology's marked impact on Chinese birthrates and all the possible reasons for those dragon year spikes -- but we also discuss cultural significance of all those zodiacal animals. They're frequent subjects in public Chinese art, so I just had to share some of the coolest looking examples from our research. These lifelike statues stand in the courtyard of Hong Kong's Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple. I expect them to come to life at any moment.

The dragon is not alone...
© Jens Kalaene/dpa/Corbis

Like me, you probably want to see each one of these beauties -- so be sure to visit this Lense Moments gallery.

About the Author: Robert Lamb spent his childhood reading books and staring into the woods — first in Newfoundland, Canada and then in rural Tennessee. There was also a long stretch in which he was terrified of alien abduction. He earned a degree in creative writing. He taught high school and then attended journalism school. He wrote for the smallest of small-town newspapers before finally becoming a full-time science writer and podcaster. He’s currently a senior writer at HowStuffWorks and has co-hosted the science podcast Stuff to Blow Your Mind since its inception in 2010. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling with his wife Bonnie, discussing dinosaurs with his son Bastian and crafting the occasional work of fiction.