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Folk Arts Fascinate Audiences
The First (Jiangsu) Chinese Folk Arts Festival which ran from December 4-8 in Nanjing, the capital city of east China's Jiangsu Province, brought people into a colorful world of folk art.

Hundreds of folk artists, specialists and scholars from about 20 provinces, cities and administrative regions throughout the country gathered to meet, talk, show their work and give special performances. Performances at the festival's grand opening ceremony on December 4 included music played on traditional gongs and drums, yangko (a popular rural folk dance) and the lion dance.

Visitors from across the country and passers-by were also treated to displays of handicraft-making in Nanjing's main streets.

They watched the folk artists make vivid clay sculptures, cut red window decorations and create sugar sculptures of animals and vegetables using a technique similar to glass-blowing.

The artists' paintings on gourds and eggshells, hand-made dolls, and pictures embroidered or weaved from hair, bamboo or wheat straws presented an impressive picture of folk art to the people.

At the same time, more than 700 pieces of artwork, including embroidery, lacquer ware, brocade, festival lanterns, carved stone and painted clay figurines, were exhibited in Jiangsu Culture Center.

"I found myself in an entirely new world the moment I got here," said one visitor.

A forum on Chinese fork art was also held, with experts giving speeches and artists sharing information.

(China Daily December 13, 2002)

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