Fancy Lantern

    Fancy Lanterns
Fancy lanterns (dēng cǎi 灯彩), also called Colored Lamps (huā dēng 花灯), are special handicraft product of Chinese tradition which are widely used for decorations on festivals and holidays, weddings and other personal celebrations in China. According to statistics, fancy lantern was originated from the Western Han Dynasty (xī hàn 西汉) over 1800 years ago. When Lantern Festival (yuán xiāo jié 元宵节) comes, people will hang red lanterns so as to create a cheerful atmosphere. Afterward lantern became the symbol of joy in China. With its development, the lantern has formed abundant varieties and super craftwork level.

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Palace LanternChinese lantern always consist of a frame made of metal wire or bamboo strips covered with paper or thin gauze and then painted over to be attractive. There are many types of fancy Lanterns, for example, palace lanterns (gōng dēng 宫灯), gauze lanterns (shā dēng 纱灯), swag lanterns (diào dēng 吊灯) etc.. As far as the modelings were concerned, they consist of character, landscape, flowers, birds, dragon, phoenix, fish and worms and so on. Apart from these, it has the lanterns with revolving figures. Chinese fancy lantern is a composition of painting, paper-cut, Zhi Zha (zhí zhá 纸扎), Ci Feng (cì féng 刺缝) etc..

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Ice LanternThe local fancy lanterns have their own characters. The Dragon lantern (lóng dēng 龙灯) in Shanghai is made in cloth, the Zou Ma Deng (zóu mǎ dēng 走马灯) in Guangdong is very exquisite, the Palace lanterns in Beijing is very elegant and fine, and the Harbin Ice-lamp (bīng dēng 冰灯) is Clean and clear, the mouth climbing grape lamp (láo shǔ pān pú táo dēng 老鼠攀葡萄灯), kylin lantern (qí líng dēng 麒麟灯), pigsy lantern (zhū bā jiè dēng 猪八戒灯), duck lantern (yā zī dēng 鸭子灯), goldfish lantern (jīn yú dēng 金鱼灯) and mandarin duck lantern (yuān yāng dēng 鸳鸯灯) are with great humor and profound morals.

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The fancy lantern is an art which represents the ingenuity of Chinese people. It combines the abstract formation, imitative sculpture, plane painting and calligraphy, complex decoration and light mechanism. It is an art with Chinese characteristics. Fancy lanterns are not only decoration of festival, but also a kind of care in people"s life.

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灯彩Gauze Lantern
      灯彩,又叫“花灯”,是一种传统的中国手工艺品,多于传统节日、婚寿吉庆之时悬挂,以烘托喜庆气氛。它与流传民间的元宵赏灯习俗密切相连。据考证,灯彩起源于1800多年前的西汉时期,每年的农历正月十五元宵节前后,人们都挂起象征团圆意义的红灯笼,来营造一种喜庆的氛围。后来灯笼就成了中国人喜庆的象征。经过历代灯彩艺人的继承和发展,形成了丰富多彩的品种和高超的工艺水平。 

      中国的灯彩是用竹、木或金属做框架,再裱糊上纸或绫绢做成。灯彩从种类上分,有宫灯、纱灯、吊灯等等;从造型上分,有人物、山水、花鸟、龙凤、鱼虫等等,除此之外还有专供人们赏玩的走马灯。中国的灯彩综合了绘画艺术、剪纸、纸扎、刺缝等工艺。中国古代制作的灯彩中,以宫灯和纱灯最为著名。
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      各地彩灯具有民族和地方特色:上海的龙灯,用布制成;广东的走马灯,结构精巧;北京的宫灯,制作精美,选料精细;哈尔滨的冰灯,玲珑剔透;河北霸县的老鼠攀葡萄灯、麒麟灯、猪八戒灯、鸭子灯、金鱼灯、鸳鸯灯都题材诙谐、寓意明快。

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      灯彩艺术体现了中华民族的才智巧思,它融抽象构成、拟形雕塑、平面书画、复合装饰和光动机制于一体,是一种具有浓郁民族特色的综合空间艺术。它不只是节日的装点和审美的对象,更是一种广泛的存在和无限的人生关怀。
 

 

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