| ||Painting |
The Cotton Picture (Mianhua Hua)
As a branch of decorative art, the cotton picture is a new comer. Spotless cotton is used as the main material and goes through the steps of washing, dyeing, moulding and shaping into human figures, flowers, birds, and animals which are pasted on silk with painted landscapes. Mounted in paned frames, they are ready for marketing and hanging in rooms.
This new art of presenting cotton pictures in low relief was developed as recently as 1964 by a workman named Huang Jiasheng of Zhangzhou, Fujian Province. The Huang family who lived on fluffing quilt cotton waddings for three generations have been innate art-lovers. At the beginning they did little patch works of birds and animals in coloured cotton on people's quilts, an art which developed into the cotton pictures of today with their distinctive characteristics. A cotton picture cooperative has been set up in Zhangzbou, specialising in this art.
Pictures of straw patchwork are made of wheat straw. Straw is first ironed, dyed, and sorted out according to shade and colour, and then cut, carved, scraped or torn into small pieces of desired shapes, which are pasted on groundworks to make pictures in low relief.
Straw patchworks are suitable for depicting various objects -flowers and fish, animals and birds, and pavilions and trees in vivid life likeness and in simple, elegant taste.
Outstanding in this field are the products of an arts and crafts factory of Harbin, which also turns out feather patch-works.