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Fanciful Latticework on Doors and Windows

Updated: 2014-11-28 16:56:28

( Chinaculture.org )

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Influenced by the burgeoning foreign trade and advanced craftsmanship, doors and windows of the Qing period, larger and more imposing in contrast, favored rich and intricate ornamentation, along with coordinated engraved designs. A large number of complicated woodcarving patterns were added.

Although these two types differed greatly in style, each reached a high level of artistic success with exquisite design, unique workmanship, and careful carving, and can claim a place in the history of China's architectural ornamentation.

 Regional diversification

Traditional Chinese doors and windows were different in style from place to place. In ancient times, woodcarving was well developed in South China. Windows and doors of the eastern provinces of Zhejiang and Anhui were often elaborately decorated with latticework and bas-reliefs.

Those of China's coastal provinces of Fujian (East China) and Guangdong (South) were usually gorgeously painted. But people living along the lower Yangtze River stressed the natural beauty of wood and preferred their doors and windows unpainted.

Doors and windows in the South, often decorated with characters from theatrical plays, were much finer than those in the North; while in the North, doors and windows mostly featured things in the natural world, such as geometric symbols, plants and animals, and sometimes even human figures.

In the 15th century, carpenters and jointers began to move to the North from Zhejiang Province. As a result, doors and windows featuring patterns of South China style began to be found in the North.

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