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Chinese seal carving, an amazing art for foreigners

2017/6/30 15:11:17

Foreigners display their seal cutting works in Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province. ( Ting)

Seal carving, also seal cutting, or zhuanke in Chinese, is a traditional form of art that originated in China with a 3700-year-long history. It refers to cutting a design on the bottom surface of the seal. The seal carving art has witnessed the huge change that Chinese characters experienced and presented it ina special way. The essence of Chinese characters is incredibly seen in the small seal. Though seal carving in China has also undergone several changes, the classical and quaint art style remain till this day. This is the charm of the seal cutting art.

Recently, ten foreigners arrived at Wang Haiming's seal cutting studio in Wanglijiang Tea Museum to take a closer look at the sealing cutting art in Qingdao, Shandong Province. It was an amazing tour of Chinese traditional culture for those foreigners.

Wang Haiming gave them an elaboration on the sealing cutting techniques, including how to polish the stone, design the script, carve, modify... Those techniques enable the foreigners to understand the seal cutting more intuitively.

Wang said that the seal carving is an art that needs ingenuity of the artisan.

He believed the feeling of art is important for seal cutting and good works are filled with esthetical taste. Literally, the cultural level and depth of thought are often considered as important measures and standard for judging an artisan.

After the demonstration of Wang, the foreigners tried to exercise it by themselves. Thai Sanlaya Engchuan told the journalist, in fluent Chinese, that she has been in China for one and a half years and learned Chinese for nearly six years. This is the first time for her to learn something about seal cutting though she is pretty interested in Chinese culture and had experienced lots of things about it. She felt it was really cool to engrave Chinese characters and images on the seal stone. The charm of seal is unfolding in this special way.

Paulina from Poland engraved “丽”, one character in her Chinese name on the seal after the event. She said once she learned seal script in her calligraphy class, but she never knew the characters can be inscribed in the seal! It’s amazing!

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Sponsor:Information Office of Shandong Provincial People’s Government