Members of public suspect Chinatown Point CNY mascot is a rat recycled as an ox

But it is actually an...

Joshua Lee | January 19, 2021, 04:25 PM

Follow us on Telegram for the latest updates:

The Chinese New Year decoration outside Chinatown Point has come under the spotlight.

Members of the public are speculating whether the mall is really going green by recycling, reducing and reusing -- by turning the mascot for the Year of the Rat into the mascot of the Year of the Ox -- by utilising a few finishing touches.

It is an otter

Shin Min Daily News reported that several readers opined that this animal sculpture below is not fitting for the Year of the Ox.

Courtesy of Shin Min Daily News

A second sculpture has the ears and whiskers of a mouse, but with horns and a nose ring affixed — like those on a cow.

Courtesy of Shin Min Daily News

"It is the Year of the Ox, but no matter how long I looked at it, I can't tell what animal this is," one reader told Shin Min Daily News.

Some readers also told the Chinese paper that it appeared that the mall had recycled the decorations from 2020's Chinese New Year, which was the Year of the Rat, and added horns to make it suitable for the Year of the Ox.

One reader said that she doesn't mind if the mall recycles decorations in the name of sustainability, but more work needs to be done with regards to the sculptures' aesthetic quality.

Specially-designed by local artist

In response to queries from Shin Min, Chinatown Point said that the animal causing mass confusion is neither rat nor ox, but an otter.

The mall said that they chose to feature otters because these animals are well-liked locally.

The otter sculptures were specially designed by a local artist.

Chinatown Point added that these otter sculptures can be re-used for different occasions.

"We added caps and horns to the otters this year to celebrate the Year of the Ox but these 'add-ons' can be removed."

From Jan. 21 to Feb. 28, Chinatown Point shoppers can receive a limited-edition otter toy.

Year of the Tiger mascot

In response to the shape-shifting mascot, one person doctored an image of the otter to depict what it would look like in the Year of the Tiger:

Chinatown Point subsequently clarified that the mascots are indeed otters:

We would like to clarify that the mascots placed around the mall are in fact otters! We chose to incorporate Otters as part of our Lunar New Year décor this year to signify a local favourite. We have commissioned Local artists to design this character specially for this campaign! As part of our efforts to support recycling, the localised otter mascots have been made such that they can be adapted for a number of campaigns. To tie-in with the CNY Year of the Ox, detachable elements such as horns and caps were added.

As part of our Lunar New Year campaign (21 January – 28 February) at Chinatown Point, shoppers stand to redeem exclusive gifts like the limited-edition otter plushies.

Top images courtesy of Shin Min Daily News.

Totally unrelated but follow and listen to our podcast here