New Year woodblock paintings still hanging in Shandong

(| Updated : 2022-03-28

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Putting up Chinese New Year pictures, or nianhua in Chinese, is an important decorative custom to welcome the Chinese Lunar New Year, especially in rural areas.

To fend off evil spirits and express good intentions for the new year, traditional paintings are hung on doors, windows, and walls.

Zhangqiu New Year Woodblock Painting is one of the most prestigious forms of its kind, which has flourished in Jinan, the capital of East China's Shandong province. The ancient handicraft was established during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), and after four generations of continuous innovation and development, Zhangqiu New Year Woodblock Painting has evolved into one of Zhangqiu's most distinctive cultural products.

Gao Ruichao, an inheritor of the Zhangqiu New Year Woodblock Painting, has explored innovative ways to protect and inherit the traditional culture in recent years. He also opened a class to promote the traditional form of art online, aiming to better preserve the traditional culture, and inspire people by boosting cultural confidence.


Gao Ruichao, an inheritor of Zhangqiu New Year Woodblock Painting, works on a woodblock in Zhangqiu district, Jinan in East China's Shandong province. [Photo/Dazhong Daily News]


Gao displays a print featuring a plump baby holding a large fish with a lotus in the background. [Photo/Dazhong Daily News]


Gao's works include a wide range of characters from traditional Chinese folk culture, such as the Fortune God. [Photo/Dazhong Daily News]