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Ivory carving faces challenge

Updated: 2011-02-25 15:00
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Ivory carving faces challenge

With the development of technology, many handicrafts have faded out. But old and traditional art form of ivory carving results in something truly treasurable.

Ivory carving faces challenge

When people see these vivid ivory carving handicrafts, they are often amazed. They are made using precious ivory left behind by extinct mammoths. Nowadays, this kind of art is seldom seen by the public. But it was very popular during the 1950s and 60s.

Liu Fenghai, Deputy-director of Harbin Ivory Carving Assn, said, "During 1958, Harbin ivory carving industry was among the top three around China. It includes the old Harbin Arts and Crafts Factory. This is one of the production workshops of the factory."

When ivory carving was popular, the worker for the factory reached more than one-thousand people. But when the World Society for the Protection of Animals was set up in 1989, China banned all trades for ivory. The crafts of ivory carving came to an abrupt halt. During recent years, with increased trade between China and Russia, mammoth ivory has gotten much more attention. Due to the mammoth ivory's un-renewable characteristics, trading of it has not been banned.

But the problem is that there are few artists in the ivory carving industry. Liu said among the middle-aged artists, there only a few individuals, so he hopes people will have more enthusiasm to participate in this great craft.


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