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Nantong banyao kite appears on stamps

en.nantong.gov.cn Updated: 2023-09-11


Guo Chengyi and his latest design. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

Nantong banyao kites, a national intangible cultural heritage item in Nantong, East China's Jiangsu province, make its appearance on the special stamps Kites issued by China Post.

In the set of stamps, the stamps printed with Nantong banyao kite are called Shuishi Ruyi meaning auspicious sign and all the best in English. The kite was designed and made by Guo Chengyi, the inheritor of the cultural heritage.

"I received messages from China Post last year saying that they would like to print a banyao kite on their stamps and they invited me to design such a kite," Guo said.

Nantong is one of China's four major kite producing areas. To give prominence to Nantong kites' characteristics, Guo decided to make a regular Qilianxing kite, which consists of seven small kites, with patterns of lions and a jade ruyi, a type of decorative scepter with an S-shaped handle and a head resembling a lingzhi mushroom.


The third set of the special stamps Kites issued by China Post. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

Unlike its North Chinese counterpart, the Nantong banyao kite makes a melodious sound when high up in the sky. Numerous whistles are the key. Therefore, the craftsman decorated his kite with some whistles of different sizes.

The other three stamps in the set are two Shandong kites with patterns of goldfish and lotus flowers as well as a boy holding a lingzhi mushroom and riding a red-crowned crane, and a Tianjin kite with patterns of butterflies flying amidst flowers and gourds.

Over the past four decades, China Post has launched two sets of the special stamps Kites with the first set appearing in 1980.