|Pujiang’s Embroidery Exhibition|
“Only after seeing it, I realized that there are so many different techniques in embroidery. As a matter of fact, Pujiang’s cross stitch embroidery is representative of the intangible cultural heritage of Jinhua.”
Pujiang’s embroidery includes a cross stitch technique that dates back to over 500 years ago. A number of representative figures of Pujiang’s embroidery industry contributed to the formation of the local school, including master Ni Renji, whose work spread to Japan thanks to his exquisite skills during the late Ming Dynasty; in modern era, Wang Suzhu developed a particular form of embroidery not based on drawings, but directly made of free-hand embroidered flowers, birds, and figures.
Pujiang’s embroidery was used to decorate clothing and handkerchiefs, pillowcases, aprons, belly bands, sachets, tents, and curtains. Therefore, embroidery is a fundamental skill for the traditional women of Pujiang. In 2010, Pujiang’s cross stitch embroidery was included in the list of Jinhua’s Municipal Intangible Cultural Heritage.
“It’s rare to see excellent embroidery works these days. There are not many people who know about Pujiang’s embroidery, and even less people are learning how to embroider. I have always wanted to hold such an embroidery exhibition to cultivate and improve people’s artistic interest and promote the popularization of local embroidery,” said Hong Guorong, curator of the event, former deputy curator of Pujiang County Cultural Center, and former deputy director of Pujiang County Intangible Heritage Protection Center. He started to gather local embroidery works at the beginning of the year, and thanks to the locals’ support, he managed to exhibit 40 pieces of embroidery.
The works originated in various historical periods, ranging from the Ming Dynasty to the present age. Themes and techniques are also various, including portraits, landscapes, flowers, and birds. Most of the works are costumes, screens, and tents.
Among the works in the exhibition, four are by Pujiang folk embroidery artist He Mingyuan. She said that after over 20 years of embroidering, her works have been sold to Germany, Spain, Australia, and other countries. Her works also won several awards, but being part of the local exhibition is the most fulfilling and meaningful event for her. “I hope that my work will enable more people to understand and fall in love with embroidery, and also contribute to carry forward the local tradition.” (Photo and text by Xia Bintingwen, translated by Marco Lovisetto, edited by Mariam Ayad)
展览的作品中,有4件是浦江民间刺绣艺术家何明园的作品。她表示,绣了二十余载,作品远销德国、西班牙和澳大利亚等国,也获得了不少荣誉,但这次展出最有成就感、最有意义。“希望我的作品能让更多人了解刺绣、爱上刺绣,一起把浦江刺绣传承发扬下去。” (记者 夏斌婷 文/摄)