Archives for posts with tag: chinese

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Time flies, holiday is over and its time to welcome the Kitchen God to return from his trip to the Jade Emperor.

The Kitchen God will return today with his god friends, showing them the family who did good and those who did evil deeds.  His friends will take notes and cast spells on the families before they return back to the Jade Emperor.  What is best to welcome the guest who traveled all the way from heaven to your home but feast!

For the annual task of protection and reporting, the wood block print for the Kitchen God are dated with a calendar of that year.  This particular print was for the year 1987.

Come to see the actual print and many others at the
New Year Print Exhibition

MOUNTAIN FOLKCRAFT
CHINESE WOOD BLOCK PRINT COLLECTION

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L60xW50xH40mm, Hong Kong

The pendent is of an abstract shape, it resembles a shell of a turtle.  In ancient times, the turtle shell is a sacred object for the Chinese, not only is it used for fortune telling it also summarizes the knowledge of cosmology, time and space.

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W200xD150xH230mm, China

This is no ordinary wine jar but one that is without a lid.  One might wonder if all the wine has to be poured through the spout, but that will be a waste of wine.  Turning the jar upside down there is a hole at the bottom, but would’t the water just fall out when the jar is turned around?  The trick of the jar is built within the pottery, the hole a the bottom is extended by a tube which extends upwards to a height which is above the opening of the spout.  The wine is trapped around the tube ready to be poured out.

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L300xW300mm, China

The composition of the embroidery is based on a scene in the Beijing Opera – Return to Jing Zhou.

The story was set in the 3 Kingdoms Period,

WEI – led by East Han chancellor Cao Cao, adviser Sima Yi
WU – led by Sun Quan, adviser Zhou Yu
SHU – led by Liu Bei, general Guan Yu, Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun, adviser Zhu Ge Liang

Sun Quan and Zhou Yu (WU) set up a plan to get Liu Bei (SHU) to hand over his strong hold Jing Zhou.  Sun Quan has a beautiful sister, to lure Liu into the trap, he proposed to Liu Bei for a marriage to his sister, a union of the 2 kingdoms. Liu Bei in return would have to go to WU for the wedding.  This is a proposal Liu Bei cannot lightly turn down for the sake of his kingdom.  Sun Quan however has no real intention of marrying his sister to his enemy, he would wanted to capture Liu Bei and and force him to hand over his kingdom.  Luckily before Liu Bei’s departure, his wizard adviser Zhu Ge Liang see through the trick and handed 3 notes to Zhao Yun and asked him to escort Liu Bei to Wu.  When Liu Bei crossed to Wu he opened the first note, it asked Liu Bei to visit the father in law of Sun Quan.  Impressed by Liu Bei and thinking that a union of the 2 kingdoms is a good idea from Sun Quan, the in law asked for Sun Quan’s mother for her approval for the marriage.  The empress dowager agreed and the marriage went ahead.  Sun Quan found out he has lost his sister, set out to detained Liu Bei in Wu.  Liu Bei opened the second note, it asked for a faked report that Jing Zhou was being attacked by now their common enemy Cao Cao (WEI).  Having a great excuse, Liu Bei together with his newly married wife and his men left Wu for Jing Zhou.  Sun Quan found out and had his general went after them.  Liu Bei then opened his third note, in the note it asked him to leave the defense to his wife.  Now in love with Liu Bei, the princess gave the general a hard time and refused to return to Wu.  When Liu Bei returned to Jing Zhou, Sun Quan’s army was confronted by Liu Bei’s general Zhang Fei and badly defeated.

A common Chinese phrase came from the story, 賠了夫人又摺兵 (not only losing the girl but the battle as well) – something similar to the phrase “throw the helve after the hatchet”.

Click here to see our wood block prints which also depicted the same opera.

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L150xDIA25, China

This beautiful brush is made for cleaning the inside of the teapot.  I am in love with the bamboo handle so I am using it for dusting my keyboard etc, but for the tea connoisseur it is an essential item for up keeping the teapot.

The brush is used to remove any small pieces of tea leaves, for picking up the moisture left in the pot.  For cleaning the hard to get to places and to give a slight polish to the pot.

clay toy

 W100xH100xD25mm, China

A figurine of a cute chubby girl holding her pekingese dog, she is no ordinary girl but A-Fu the giant child and what she is toying with is no pet dog but a fierce lion.  She and her boy friend has been send to earth to protect us from beasts that has been threatening the villagers in ancient time.  (It would seem that the human are a more a threat to the wild life today and they should turn around and offer them protection instead.)

Click here to see our other A Fu.

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L80xW30mm, China

It is hard to have your pet with you all the time, how about having a cute little fish that can hang out by your side?

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W180xD70xH500mm, China

This little guy is the bridegroom in the puppet theater.

This puppet is called a Chaozhou wire puppet, the body of the puppet is supported by a main wire attached to the back of waistline of the puppet while the 2 arms are controlled by 2 wires attached to the waists, hence wire puppet, all the 3 wires are controlled by the puppeteer at the back stage.

The wire puppet is originated from the shadow puppet, it is also known as the Paper Shadow Puppet (through there is no paper and no shadow at all).  From the break through from its 2 dimensions into having a round body, a head, then the removal of the paper screen demanding for a more very articulated head and costume.  The control of the puppet remained more or less the same as the traditional shadow puppet giving the limitation of the movement of the head and the legs.

Click here to see the insight of wire puppet in today’s world.  In the beginning of the movie you will see a man talking in a small construction site to a worker.  The worker is one of the puppeteers who have abandon his art to make a more stable living as a masonry worker.  The leader of the small puppet theater was trying to lure him to perform again.  Despite being one of the national  intangible cultural heritage items, it seems that its survival at the moment is only held out by the determination of the artisan.  So next time when you see a puppet show please go and give it the support it deserves.


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W25xD25xH85mm, China

The Chinese adores the symbol of the bat; being viewed as an icon of blessing, their symbol can be seen everywhere.  The Chinese name for bat is 蝠 (fu), which sound like the word blessing, 福 (fu).

This particular toggle do looks a bit like the Dracula, now that’s a cool blessing!

Click here to see our other bats.

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DIA150xH30mm, China

A famille rose octagonal plate with an auspicious pattern.

A pattern common enough, but can someone let us know what the yellow fusilli like shape and 5 red decoration represent? 5 bats in the cloud?  5 peony within a sea of yellow bats?