Students Experience Dough Modelling

2023-11-24

Instructed by Mr. Zuo Ansheng, an inheritor of folk dough modelling, the students of the Central Primary School of Yiwen Town, Yinan County, experienced dough modelling, searched the historical origin of the craft, and explored the cultural deposits to spread and inherit the outstanding cultural tradition.

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As an intangible cultural heritage of China, dough modelling is made with flour, glutinous rice flour as main materials, mixed with pigments, wax, and honey to become doughs of various shapes by using simple tools. With diverse colors, beautiful shapes, and apparent fun, the craft has been popular with people of all ages.

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Shape is the priority for dough modelling. Ingenious skill is important as well. A colored dough is kneaded for a general shape; tiny accessories are kneaded; some tools are used to make details, engrave the texture, and make adjustments repeatedly; finally, the main part and accessories are assembled. Instructed by Mr. Zuo Ansheng, the students gradually made artful shapes. Soon, a vivid dough modelling of the Monkey King from the Journey to the West was produced.

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The images for dough modelling are mainly from fairy tales, legends, historical stories, classics, and traditional opera culture. As the 5th-generation inheritor of the “Zuo’s Dough Modelling”, Mr. Zuo can make dough modellings of both traditional figures, animals, flowers, and stylish cartoon images and classical shapes to bring novel experiences for audiences.

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Mr. Zuo instructed the basic methods of the craft, guiding them to make dough modelling in person. The students used their creative ideas and produced their unique works, experiencing an interesting cultural activity.

In recent years, Yinan-based Yiwen Town has been promoting traditional culture in schools and helping teenagers experience the connotation and appeal of outstanding traditional culture to inherit cultural traditions and enhance their cultural confidence in a better manner.

Liu Ziyu, Li Zehui

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