Culture  Cross-Straits Biz  Travel  Population & Nationalities  Customs  Language & Chinese Character  Chinese Cuisin  Picture Gallery 
Population & Nationalities
Language & Chinese Character
 Cross-Straits Biz
 Picture Gallery
 Exchange Rate
Paper Cutting
   日期:2003-07-22 16:17        编辑: system        来源:

  Paper cutting is a traditional art that has evolved throughout the course of Chinese cultural development. Its origin should be closely connected with the invention of paper during the Han dynasty (206 B.C.-221 A.D.). As paper was highly precious in the early days, the art of paper cutting first became popular in the royal palaces and houses of nobility as a favorite pastime among court ladies. Later, during the 7th through 13th centuries, paper cutting was immensely popular during folk festivals and celebrations. By the 14th century, the art had spread to the Middle East and Europe; and by the 15th century onward, paper cut art works had become an integral part of the everyday life of the people. However, the art of paper cutting was on the verge of dying out during the past century as old China experienced successive years of the disaster of war brought on by domestic turmoil and foreign invasion. Amidst a myriad of changes in their lives, most people had no leisure time to engage in the study of the art of paper cutting.
The Taiwan has been actively promoting the renaissance of Chinese culture since the 1980s. The art of paper cutting has again received a great deal of attention because of heavy publicity, resulting in even more innovative artwork. The influence of paper cutting on continental Europe and Asia can be traced back to the seventh century. It spread to Japan and then to the Middle East and Europe via the Silk Road, thus leading to the development of many diverse styles. Today, many valuable ancient paper cutouts are kept in the national museums of these countries.
The art of paper cutting(2.6M mpeg file) has remained unfading in China through the ages principally because its devotees used the skills of knife and scissors to dynamically depict splendid Chinese culture and folk festivals in all its many facets-in a most interesting and likable way that is felt to be more and more precious with the passage of time.(The mpeg driver)
For example, noble ladies in ancient times would often use paper cutting to practice their art during their leisure, while social calls by ordinary folk involved giving paper cuts as gifts and using paper cut fancy likenesses for pretty adornment to signify auspiciousness. Subsequently, mutual emulation and minute study led to a superb level of technique. By later generations, paper cut art ranged from clipping complicated patterns using a tiny pair of scissors to often making cutouts into window decorations, clothes-making stencils, or embroidery patterns for shoes.
As the art has been passed down through the generations, the mainstream techniques developed many diverse forms, but the themes of the subject matter have primarily remained folk motifs, with two-dimensional illustrations as the primary form. The technique they display consists of a combination of trimming with scissors and carving with a knife. The rendering of their visual appearance involves such methods as applying multiple layers of color, folding symmetrically, individually pasting, or uniquely engraving. These diversified cutting methods could be said to be quite beautiful, but manifestation of the unique, lively beauty of paper cut art still depends on the artistic mastery of every paper cut artisan.
Generally speaking, animated artistic creation is extraordinary because of the artist, time, place, environment, and disposition. Carved reproductions of paper cuttings for commercial purposes can only remain at the level of mere handicrafts.
In recent years, Mrs. Linda Pu-fei Sun Yeh has revived the art of traditional Chinese paper cutting through her dilligent study and uniquely creative style. As a result of her uncanny cutting skill, the art has undergone a metamorphosis from ordinary folk handicraft to works of a sophisticated, cultural art standard. Every one of her paper cut art pieces is an animated, vivid, and fascinating image that seems to be three-dimensional. She has held many personal exhibitions in renowned museums and cultural centers in Taiwan and around the world. The worldwide acclaim has gained her greater respect and recognition in the international art arena.
Nonetheless, Mrs. Yeh feels that Chinese paper cutting art can seek future development in the following directions that she also intends to strive for. First, she calls on the public to accord due respect for the traditional classic and elegant style rather than cut reproductions and imitations with a knife. Second, she advises artists to capture the sense of rhythm in the folk art and explore new themes rather than being confined to the conventional Chinese folk festivals. Third, she has hopes that the art of paper cutting may blend the romantic charm of traditional Chinese painting, the fineness of embroidery, and the form in Western sculpture in order to create a realistic sense of three-dimensional imagery and revitalizing and animating the art form.
Aside from all this, engaging in the mastery and study of paper cutting is a delightful recreation that nourishes the mind. It cultivates patience and concentration among young people, and diminishes loneliness for the middle-aged and elderly. The art of paper cutting also contributes to closer friendship among associates, resulting in a sharing of experience and wisdom. As a beneficial exercise for both the eyes and the hands, this decorative art is a recreation that transcends age limits.
The sense of fulfillment in mastering a pair of scissors, the sense of being uplifted in both the traditional and creative realms, and the satisfaction of achieving the lofty ideals of truth, beauty and goodness, fill the heart of an artist with indescribable joy.

Advertising | Sitemap | Help | About Us
Copyright Chinataiwan.org .All Rights Reserved