The arts and handicrafts of Yangzhou is famous in the world for its long history, compete variety, exquisite craftsmanship, bright local feature and is the important integral part of historical culture of Yangzhou. No matter they are the beautiful yet elegant lacquer ware, the exquisitely carved jade ware, simple and unsophisticated and delicate embroidery and the wonderful paper cut and the lifelike sola flower, they show the eastern romantic charm and enjoy reputation in the world. Yangzhou is one of the key production areas of handicraft art product.
The jade craving technology of Yangzhou has a history of more than 5300 years according to the record of historical materials. The lacquer ware of Yangzhou started from the warring States and flourished in Qin Dynasty and Han Dynasty. The production of lacquer ware, jade ware and copper jade reached a certain scale in the period of Eastern Han Dynasty. The production of handicraft article such as bronze mirror, gold and silver decorations, lacquer ware, jade ware, sculpture, and embroidery and velvet flowers was highly developed in Tang Dynasty. Champleve was created and grew up in Yuan Dynasty. The Shanzi carving product appeared. Ming Dynasty was the important period for Yangzhou to create the treasure inlaying, mother-of-Pearl inlaying (It is called “making delicate pattern with color shell”), carved lacquer ware and other valuable lacquer wares and form the unique style. Production of handiwork reached the peak in Qing Dynasty. It went downhill along with depression of economy of Yangzhou. Since the founding of New China, especially after reform and opening up, the achievement made in economic and cultural undertakings of Yangzhou instills new vitality for development of traditional craft of Yangzhou.
Paper cut rooster
Among 45 varieties of traditional handcraft protected by People’s Government of Yangzhou, there are 15 in Yangzhou, accounting for one third of the total amount of the province. The arts and handicrafts of Yangzhou make innovation constantly on the basis of inheriting, a great batch of rare and competitive products are produced successively and has won big prize in national evaluation. Now more than 10 crafts competitive products are collected in China National Arts and Crafts Museum. Yangzhou Arts and Crafts Museum, which was built in 2003 with the great support of the municipal government, exhibits more than 200 Crafts competitive products of 8 major types. This makes the dream of several generation of craftsman of Yangzhou. Stick to implementation of exquisite strategy and constant technical innovation. A great batch of fine art products emerges. On the Chinese Crafts and Artisan Masters product and arts and handicrafts competitive products exposition, the proud achievement of wining ten among 24 special awards in consecutive years throughout the year. This is hailed as the outstanding performance in “Yangzhou phenomenon” and has won the high praise of the same trade in the country.
Yangzhou gathers a lot of famous handicraft masters and has a galaxy of talents. The team of traditional handicraft talents is growing. There are 10 Chinese Crafts and Artisan Masters, and 25 provincial Crafts and Artisan Masters, 16 famous provincial arts and handicrafts talents, and 40 municipal Crafts and Artisan Masters (the above number includes the deceased masters). The national maters, provincial masters and provincial famous persons account for about one fifth of the total number of the province. The masters have great attainments and have made a great deal of contribution in all fields of arts and handicrafts and have made outstanding contribution for protection and development of traditional craft.
The painting technology, jade carving technology and paper cut are listed as the first batch of intangible cultural heritage of the country. The embroidery, colored-lantern making, sola flower, velvet flowers, lacquer painting and making metal handiwork of Yangzhou are listed in the first batch provincial-level intangible cultural heritage protection directory. The “Qihua” brand lacquer ware and the “Yuyuan" brand jade ware won the title of China time-honored brand and provincial famous brand product and provincial famous trademark.
Carved lacquerware jade ware ground screen-good fortune, long life, health and peace
Lacquer ware of Yangzhou has a long history and exquisite craftsmanship. The decorative craftsmanship includes ten major types such as carved lacquer ware, Jade inlaying, making delicate pattern with color shell and Pearl Polishing of mother-of-pearl inlay and all types of inlaying and carving and colored drawing. The craftsmanship for making delicate pattern with color shell is created by Yangzhou. It is very exquisite. The lacquer ware of Yangzhou obtained the protection of origin in 2004 approved by State Bureau of Technical Supervision.
Yangzhou is one of the places of origin of jade ware in Yangzhou. The jade craftsmanship has a long history. Jade ware is always regarded as the symbol of nobleness and purity and has high artistic value and collection value. The production scale, quantity of competitive products and the craftsmanship are at the first place throughout the country.
White jade Taibai chain kettle, jasper-Buddha field figure
The embroidery of Yangzhou excels in archaistic mountain and water embroidery and liberal style embroidery with the characteristics of fine and changeable stitches, elegant and beautiful color and leisure.
The special handiwork of Yangzhou mainly include colored-lantern making, paper cut, velvet flowers, chenille article, sola flower and gold and silver decorations, etc. The product has a lot of varieties and is well sold at home and abroad and obtains the favor of customers. In addition to the traditional palace lantern, trotting horse lamp, the colored-lantern making of Yangzhou developed large-scale color lamp in recent years and the large scale Art Lantern Show are held for many times. Yangzhou is one of the places where Chinese paper cut got popular. The paper cut artist of Yangzhou uses a pair of scissors and several pieces of rice paper to cut the paper representing good luck, best wishes, happiness and longevity, fortune and delight with a lot of change and meaning. It has the practical, decorative and appreciative function. Sola flower is the consummate art of Yangzhou. It uses rice-paper pith as the raw materials to make the lifelike handiwork of all types. The chrysanthemum miniascape is most famous. The metal handiwork of Yangzhou uses gold, silver, copper and tin as raw materials with jade embedded, treasure inlayed and enamel added to make wonderful artistic product.