Painted gourds add color to Shandong | Updated: 2018-07-09 15:07
A painted gourd by Li Wenxing from Rizhao city in Shandong province on July 7, 2018. [Photo/IC]

Gourd has a similar pronunciation as the Chinese word fulu, which means "happiness", and is regarded as a symbol of the Chinese people. The hand-painted gourd, originating in the Song Dynasty (960-1279), is now an intangible cultural heritage item of Rizhao city in Shandong province.

Li Wenxing, a gourd painting craftsman, has decorated his house with different-styled gourds, painted with images of the Maitreya Buddha, landscapes and the twelve Chinese zodiac signs. Li only uses a single paintbrush and a plate of color paints — but after no more than half an hour, vivid artwork appears. The commonplace gourds are thereby endowed with spirituality and life, becoming lifelike objects.

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