Phase 1: Posing Real Questions

Updated 5 years 3 days ago

 

Right now, all I pretty much know about wood carving is that it is both a challenging and impressive Chinese cultural artwork that takes a lot of practice to fully master. It takes a lot of work to finish it, but once it is done, it is a beautiful piece of artwork. Even though I am not sure what tools they use to carve, it is probably some simple devices, and not machine made.

I know this because I have seen some Chinese locals work on wood carving while I was out traveling for vacation. I have also tried carving on bamboo once, in Yellow Mountain, during China Alive last year, which may or may not be similar to that of carving wood.

Knowing about wood carving not only polishes my knowledge on the topic itself, but possibly some factors of china history and chinese culture. I want to know how exactly you create a piece of carved wood, and how people came to learn of this technique. The history of this skill must be quite vivid and important for me to fully understand this topic

I did some research about this topic and some facts I found are recorded on my Phase 3 post: 

Some major questions I have on wood carving are:

1. How long has this skill been going on for?

2. Do people who carve on wood doors also know how to carve on other places like chairs or tables?

3. Who, in the town of XI Zhou, is a master in the art of wood carving?

4. What type of wood is used, or what is the best choice?

5. Are there any legends/stories related to wood carving?

6. What tools are required?

7. Who was the one who invented this technique?

8. What is the difference of carvings on doors to those on chairs, tables, and others?

9. How long does it take, in average, to finish a piece on one door?

10. Did this skill originate from China? If so, where in China? If not, then where did it come from, and how did it come to China?

 

Possible answers (not actual answers):

1. How long has this skill been going on for?

Probably quite a long time, judging by how perfected the skill is.

2. Do people who carve on wood doors also know how to carve on other places like chairs or tables?

Maybe, if the chars and tables are wood. It make be harder to do so because chairs have rounds area, whereas doors are flat.
 

3. Who, in the town of XI Zhou, is a master in the art of wood carving?

4. What type of wood is used, and what is the best choice?

Maybe on a softer type of wood, since it would be easier to carve on.

5. Are there any legends/stories related to wood carving? What are they?

On many doors, the designs have dragons or phoenix's on them. That may symbolize ancient legends about those creatures.

6. What tools are required?

Carving tools, hammer, knife or sharp object.

7. Who was the one who invented this technique?

8. What is the difference of carvings on doors to those on chairs, tables, and others?

As a decoration, or to protect them from some sort of curse. It may as well be a symbol of their past and history, or it may be a sign of luck and wealth. Putting these on doors are like a charm. You would rather prevent the monster from coming into your house before it comes into your house, rather than see a carved chair within the house, then leave.

9. How long does it take, in average, to finish a piece on one door?

Maybe around one month

10. Did this skill originate from China? If so, where in China? If not, then where did it come from, and how did it come to China?

This skill probably originated from China. It might have started in Xi Zhou, since it is a famous and perfected technique there. The skill of wood carving may also be a daily practice in other places as well.

Things I need to know ahead of time is who I need to talk to and where I could find information about wood carving. That way, I can go ahead and ask all the questions I have in mind for those people. Another thing I would need to know is the basic history and meaning behind wood carving, so I can come up with deeper and more meaningful questions to ask.

 

Hello, my name is Alisa. I am an Alumni from Group C, the Cookie Monsters. Over the course of one month, I strengthen my bond with Mr.T and Mrs. Mai, as well as my wonderful friends who accompanied me on my journey. I learned so many things, went so many places, met so many people, ate lots of delicious foods! My adventure in Xi Zhou never failed to keep me laughing. By the end of the trip, I was a wood carving master, and had a family of eighteen crazy cookie monsters, whom I shared this amazing journey with. My trip to Xi Zhou changed my way of thinking and how I live my life. I will never forget the memories I made at Xi Zhou as a member of the Cookie Monsters.