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Qinhuai lanterns made for upcoming festival

en.nantong.gov.cn Updated: 2024-02-23


Rabbit-shaped lanterns, one of the Qinhuai lantern categories, made by Chen Quan. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

With the arrival of the Lantern Festival which will be celebrated on Feb 24 this year, Chen Quan, a native of Nantong, Jiangsu province, has been busy making one of Qinhuai lantern categories – rabbit-shaped lanterns.

Born in 1978, Chen has suffered from ankylosing spondylitis for over 20 years. In 2019, recommended by the Nantong Disabled Persons' Service Center, he participated in the training courses for Qinhuai lantern making.


Chen Quan shows off a rabbit-shaped lantern. [Photo/Nantong Daily]

After several years of exploration and practice, Chen has become adept at the handicraft. "All these lanterns were all hand-made and it usually takes about three hours to make such a lantern," the artisan explained.

He also revealed that during the folk art activities for the annual festival, he will demonstrate the Qinhuai lantern making techniques onsite.

Originated in the Three Kingdoms (220-280), the craft draws on the strengths of painting, calligraphy, paper cutting, shadow puppet, embroidery, and sculpture and features other crafts including carpentry, lacquering, clay figurines, and knitting.

In 2008, Qinhuai lanterns were listed among the second batch of the national intangible cultural heritage items.