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Culture Folk-custom

Wax Printing

Wax printing is a kind of ancient traditional craft. Artists of wax printing make great efforts to weed through the old traditional techniques to bring forth the new and raise the wax printing art to a higher level. Therefore, it stands in the forest of art with an entirely new look.

Wax printing, which is known as the first printing in the East, is the most ancient handicraft in China. More than two thousand years ago, in Qing and Han Dynasties, China began to print pictures on the cloth and dye it later. When the wax was removed, the pictures could be seen. In the Tang Dynasty, products of wax printing were exported to Europe and Asia. Later, with the further development of the economy in the Central China, new industry gradually took the place of hand-made operation. The wax printing technique was lost in one place after another. But in some remote areas, such as Guizhou, this precious craft passed down generation after generation by oral instruction for two reasons. One is that the place is hard to get to so there are not much cultural exchanges. The other is that the natural resources that could be used in wax printing are quite rich.. For years, the product of wax printing which is simple and unrestrained, has been the ornament and decoration of clothes and rooms for the minor nationalities in Guizhou.

The wax printing in Guizhou is featured as being lucid, lively, and uninhibited.

The kinds of wax printing products are various. There are wall hangings, letter bags, bags, aprons, cushions, table-clothes, door curtains, cloth-made dolls and so on. The style is from abstract to realistic. The content varies from figures, flowers and birds, landscapes to calligraphy.

There is no ending for the pursuit of art. The folk artists keep on searching and studying and ingeniously combine the art of painting, the art of calligraphy and the ancient folk art into a whole. The artists try to change the traditional view that wax printing is just a few pieces of cloth. They want wax printing to pass through the hall into the inner chamber as Hangzhou Silk and Suzhou Embroidery.