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Hangzhou launches new handicraft art project by the Grand Canal

Tatiana Rokou - 13 October 2017, 00:07

Located by the Grand Canal, one of the two UNESCO heritage sites in Hangzhou, the Pavilion is surrounded by four museums which celebrate some of the most acclaimed Chinese craftsmanship.

HANGZHOU, China - Home to rich Chinese cultural heritage and traditional handcrafts, the city of Hangzhou is launching a new handicraft art project at the Workmanship Demonstration Pavilion, giving international visitors the opportunity to enjoy viewing the finest examples of traditional local crafts such as pottery making, tie-dying, and making oil-paper umbrellas, while integrating the experience with museum visits, offering an immersive way to experience Chinese culture.

The handicraft art project was created with the goal of combining the timeless intangible cultural heritages with fashion, which will help to introduce Hangzhou's celebrated cultural icons to more people in engaging and interactive ways.

Located by the Grand Canal, one of the two UNESCO heritage sites in Hangzhou, the Pavilion is surrounded by four museums which celebrate some of the most acclaimed Chinese craftsmanship: the Hangzhou Arts & Crafts Museum, the China Fan Museum, the China Knives and Scissors and Swords Museum and the China Umbrella Museum.

A highlight art project at the Pavilion is the exquisite craftsmanship of traditional bamboo weaving. The renowned Hangzhou handicraft icon has impressed many people with its meticulous details and breathtaking artistry.

"There is the old Chinese saying that one can eat no meat but not live without bamboo, I think maozhu (moso bamboo) is a very natural, eco-friendly material that's very gentle and close to our lives," said Zhang Xinrong, the 58-year-old bamboo weaving master who has been making the beautiful bamboo art crafts for 40 years.

The bamboo weaving has stricter requirements than most other handcrafts, because one mistake could waste all previous efforts. Visitors can peak into the process of this handicraft from molding to preparing and weaving the bamboo strips while learning the history and techniques from Zhang at the Pavilion.

"Nowadays few people are willing to learn bamboo weaving, so I want to come to the Pavilion and introduce the concept to more children, show them the beauty and benefits of bamboo weaving and pass the traditional Chinese cultural heritage to the next generation."

In addition, traditional Zhang Xiaoquan scissors, oil-paper umbrellas, sand-fired red and purple clay pots, and gourd painting are also must-see crafts. More than 30 art projects are offered in different sections for visitors who want to make their own meaningful souvenirs by hand.

The Pavilion has already received many distinguished guests from around the world including former prime minister of the Netherlands Wim Kok and his wife, who visited the Pavilion to enjoy the traditional Hangzhou handicrafts and meet with veteran craftsmen.



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