Museum of Handcraft Paper in a Yunnan village

By Xu Jing ( ) Updated: 2015-10-29 16:56:52
Museum of Handcraft Paper in a Yunnan village

Liu Kankan stands on the road outside the village, gazing at the museum. [Photo by Xu Jing/]

Against such a background, the construction of the museum is just in time. This project was launched by Long Wen, an editor at Intellectual Property Publishing House and an expert in traditional culture protection, graphic designer Yi An and architect Hua Li. It is a part of the plan for preservation and development of traditional resources, in which papermaking can be preserved as a cultural heritage and contribute to community growth. To exhibit the history, technique and product of paper making, this museum consists of exhibition space, work space and guest rooms for artist and visitors.

Long Zhanxian, a Xinzhuang villager as well as the former and first curator of the museum, also contributed to the construction of the museum. He persuaded the surrounding villagers to give free usage of farmland to project sponsors, supervised the museum's construction and maintained daily operations for a couple of years.

"I'm totally in favor of building such a museum in my village. It's not only a commemoration of our honorable traditional technique and our ancestors, but also a valuable chance to combine our tradition with some fashion elements. That's why I overrode all objections and tried my best to help launch the project. I'm happy to see that up to now, the staff members keep a wonderful relationship with our villagers. It also boosts tourism industry in this area, especially since 2012," he said.

Since last July, younger and more knowledgeable people have joined the museum's operation and development team. Li Yijiao, a master of arts graduate from Yunnan Arts University, decided to work in the village museum. As a Yunnan local, she grew up in a village not far from Xinzhuang village. Although she studied and worked in Kunming for 10 years, she gave up city life a year after a two-week research trip in Xinzhuang, and started to lead the rural life she desired.

"For many people, rural life might be a little bit poor, dull and inconvenient, but to me, it's sweet, free and quiet as it is in my childhood memory. I'm also fond of old things and traditional techniques very much. When I studied in Kunming, I always went to the antique market to clean out treasures, such as ancient books and embroidered pieces. I made handwork, such as ceramics and wood carving, in my spare time as well. So it's a natural choice for me to work in the museum," she said.

After five years of working as a translator in Canada, Liu Kankan, who has long been concerned about China's rural cultural construction, has been in charge of the daily work at the museum since last December. Although normally taciturn, she got along well with the locals.

Editor's Picks
Hot words

Most Popular