Chinese paper-cutting art finds fans at Western art fair

Source: Xinhua| 2019-04-27 19:26:53|Editor: mingmei
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SAN FRANCISCO, April 26 (Xinhua) -- Chinese art with unique traditional traits and appealing content can have higher visibility in the mainstream Western art world, a Chinese artist dedicated to bringing Chinese folk art and culture to the rest of the world said Friday.

Zhou Bing, a paper-cutting artist and CEO of Changzhou Qingyunge Art Co., Ltd. in Jiangsu Province, China, told Xinhua that he has been working for nearly 10 years to promote Chinese folk art and culture, particularly paper-cutting art, among Westerners.

Zhou is bringing a host of paper-cutting works to Art Market San Francisco, an annual premier art fair in the San Francisco Bay Area, which opened to the public on Friday.

The contemporary and modern art fair features established galleries from around the globe, and brings together some of the world's most intriguing artists and galleries in San Francisco.

Zhou was the only Chinese art representative among 85 artists selected globally by Art Market Productions, a Brooklyn, New York-based art company, to attend the San Francisco art fair this year.

Zhou said the items on display at the fair were the intricately carved paper-cutting works created by him and his family members including his father Zhou Yunhua, a renowned Chinese master of Jintan paper-cutting.

"All the works exhibited here were inspired by Jintan paper-cutting, a Chinese folk art included in the List of United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2009," he said.

The paper-cutting works blended Chinese tradition with the striking effect of woodcuts, the method of focus perspective in Western painting, and the effect of light and shade in photography to create a unique visual style of Chinese folk art expressed in the form of paper-cutting, Zhou said.

The presence of Chinese paper-cutting at the prestigious art fair in the Bay Area indicated its acknowledgement by Western audiences, said Zhai Chunping, president of Kiangsu Chekiang Association of Northern California (KCANC).

"Art is a bridge connecting different communities in the United States, and only by expanding communication and exchanges with other communities can overseas Chinese better help Western people understand the unique tradition and heritage of Chinese culture," Zhai said.

During a VIP preview of the art fair Thursday night that attracted more than 5,000 invitation-only visitors, many professional art collectors, dealers and connoisseurs showed a strong interest in the paper-cutting pieces exhibited at the booth of the Chinese gallery, raving about the amazing and exquisite craftsmanship of traditional Chinese art.

An American art collector from Seattle instantly placed an order of 30,000 U.S. dollars for a long-roll paper-cutting work, titled "Eighty-Seven Immortals," which was inspired by the Chinese legend of the immortals attending the birthday party of the Queen Mother of the West.

Caroline Mota, a native artist from San Francisco, said she was greatly impressed by Chinese art.

"I've been very aware of the contributions of the Chinese community, particularly in the arts," she said.

"The subject matter of the artistic pieces is tremendous and there is a lot of representation here. The exchanges between Chinese and American cultures are vitally important as I think it's a very shared vocabulary," she added.

Amy Spassov, an art dealer from Seattle, described the San Francisco art fair as a great event that brings people together.

"I think that really is what it's about, it is about connecting with people ... and engaging and educating," she said.

The ninth San Francisco art fair is open Friday through Sunday. The fair attracted more than 28,000 visitors in 2018.