Paper cutting, or Jianzhi in Chinese, is a traditional art in China which has been making its way along the route of the long history of paper. The kind of art went after the invention of paper in Han Dynasty (206 BC - 220), once became one of the main forms of arts, and was popular to the people of the time; even in royal families, ladies were also judged by the ability at papercutting.
Most of the papercutting artists are women. The themes of their works usually include everything in people's daily life from dumb things to the surroundings. Familiarity makes them understand the real spirit of the art.
The main tool for papercut is scissors. Once they are owned by a master of papercut, they will become so supernatural that the papercuts beyond imagination flow out of his/her hands in the chattering of a common pair of scissors. Another tool for paper cutting is engraving knives which are necessary to enhance a sharpened effect or to make a delicate job.
No doubt that arts come from life and serve life. Papercuts are very popular in the countryside. The bright colors of red, green or light blue papercuts provide a strong foil to set off a merry atmosphere. So they are often found in wedding ceremonies or festivals, especially for Chinese New Year in China. And people like to decorate their windows and doors using colorful papercuts.
Check out a few examples of Chinese paptercuts.
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