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    Weifang World Kite Museum
    Tel:0536-8251752 / 8237313
    Address:66 Xingzheng Street, Weifang City, Shandong, P.R. China
    Post Code:261041

Weifang World Kite Museum


Exhibition Hall No.2

The Second Exhibition Hall:The Excellent Exhibition of Weifang Kites

1、The Formation of Weifang Kites SchoolS:

 Influenced by the folklore art-shaped crafts, embroidery, jewellery and woodblock prints, Weifang kites gradually form two main categories, namely, Yangjiabu Kites with woodblock prints as its core and Old Wei County Kites with literati and gentlemen enjoying paintings as its core.

2、Weifang kites 11

???? Located in Qi and Lu state, Weifang is known as a cultural city as well as a hometown for handicraft industry in history. Weifang kites began to be famous by the common people from Song Dynasty, reached popularity in Ming Dynasty and were prosperous in Qing Dynasty.
  Weifang kites, which have strong local characteristics and vivid charm, are the combination of locality and art tradition, more often, the combination of practicability and beauty. After tentative improvement and continuous creation, a unique style with elegant design, exquisite making and bright colors has been formed, which later came out two kite schools, namely, Yangjiabu kites and Old Wei County kites. During the process of their development, eleven kite masters with their own characteristics have occurred.
  Chen Shanting a kite handicraftsman when the Emperor was Tong Zhi. His works emphasize the strong life atmosphere and traditional style, whose kite drafts as “Thunder” and “ Crane with Children” has been still remained by the common people.
  Kites of Tang Family Kites of Tang Family were originated from the end of Ming Dynasty. Kites with hard-winged characters occupied majority. The “Double Swallow” kite, which was initiated by the fourth generation Tang Yanshou, intensified the vividness and slightness.
  Zhang Yanlu Kites Zhang Yanlu adopted dynamics theory and developed to tie the median, thus helping the kites keep balance while flying. Several kite masters adopted this technique and had enormous significance on the development of flying kites.
  Mu Dan” Kites “Mu Dan” was named Mu Xiulan. Since she was good at painting peonies, people gave her a nickname “Mu Dan”. The backbones of her kites were mainly like buckets and hard boards. Her greatest works embodied painting characters in a flat board. The backbones in the middle were fat and a bit long, with short wings, which could fully represent her art skills.
  Guo Naixin Guo Naixin, whose paintings completely adopted fine brushwork of traditional Chinese paintings, was quite good at paintings. According to the requirements of the traditional Chinese paintings, the design and colors, even the veins, belts and hair ornaments were sketched. Generally speaking, a bar of thin and long bamboo penetrating from the head to the end of his character kites bend a circle in his outline, then fix them on the upper clay of the flat board, paste, and finally paint the characters, making the outline full and rich.
  Hu Jingzhu a famous kite handicraftsman in Weifang. His masterpiece was stringed dragon-head centipede kite. He was strict with the materials of kites. Great emphasis was focused on symmetry for guaranteeing the takeoff effect. Since the degree of tightness of veining was proper, it was easy to fly.
  Yang Tongke Yang Tongke, one of the present Yangjiabu Kites representatives, added woodblock prints style to the paintings of kites and formed unique Yangjiabu Kites.
  Yang Wanshan His kites were known for elegant making and exquisite technique, especially the backbones, which were required strictly. The bamboo was requested to be smooth without thorns and it was difficult to find out the trace of had been roasted for the bending parts.
  Han Lianxi The backbones were just like the style of Chinese painting that relies on free strokes and shuns details. It was easy to fix and unfix the two wings. The characters were painted on the chief backbone. On the basis of the traditional color kites, he added some modern color design.
  Kang Wanxiang Most of his kites were dragon-stringed. From the design and color of his dragon-head centipede kites, we could notice big color sections and strong colors. Together with realistic style of kite masters in Weifang, he was known as “The Kang School”.
  Sun Yongchun Sun Yongchun was quite good at making stringed kites. His works adopted wide subjects, vivid design and bright color. He could make kites tiny and exquisite, even the birds? in the sky, animals on the earth and in water.
   It is easy to make the backbones of Yangjiabu Kites. Influenced by the woodblock prints, the paintings adopt simplicity, generalization, exaggeration and bright color. The majority were character kites with myth legends, novels and plays as its subject matter. Also, there were other kites, like birds, fishes, worms and flowers, all of which represented the wish for the happy life of the working people. Yangjiabu Kites began to be known in Ming Dynasty. Although words recordation and materials left about Yangjiabu Kites in Ming Dynasty were not available, Yangjiabu Woodblock Prints could be proved as evidence.In Qing Dynasty, Yangjibu Kites, same as woodblock prints and fans, became one of the three chief sideline occupations for the peasants in Yangjiabu. After the founding of P.R.C, the Party and the government paid great attention to the development of Yangjiabu Kites. With the convening of Weifang International Kite Festival, the local government focused considerable attention on Yangjiabu Kites. The year 1986 witnessed the opening of Yangjiabu Kites Factory, whose majority production were “solid soft-winged” kites and top-graded kites made of thin and tough silk fabric.

3、The Brief Introduction to the Masters at Kite-making:

???? Along with the holding of the Weifang International Kite Festival and the development of Weifang kites, a group of excellent masters at kite-making who have been repeatedly awarded prizes in international competitions and have been highly spoken of by the kite lovers throughout the world have appeared in this city.
Han Fuling: Born in 1934, the deputy secretary-general of Weifang Kite Association. Since the first Weifang International Kite Festival, his works have repeatedly won prizes in competitions at home and abroad. He was conferred the title “Kite Star” by Weifang Municipal Government in 1989.
Lang Xianzhong: Born in 1939, The main subjects of his works are historical allusions and folk stories. He has taken part in tens of national and international kite competitions and has won prizes for many times. He was conferred the title “Kite Star” by Weifang Municipal Government.
Wang Ruixiang: Wang is good at making soft-winged kites, which are ingeniously conceived, originally designed and vividly painted. Wang was conferred the title “Excellent Kite-maker” by Weifang Federation of Trade Unions.
Zhang Jianmin: Born in 1947, a present member of Weifang Kite Association. Beautiful ladies in ancient costumes was the main subject of his elegantly painted, many of which have got special honors in the kite-flying competitions at home and abroad. Zhang was conferred the title “Kite Star” by Weifang Municipal Government in 1989.
Tan Lixin: The relief images in his works, ingeniously conceived and bright-colored, are extremely lifelike and vivid. His kites, light and conveniently composed, have excellent flying ability in spite of the hugeness. He was conferred the title “Kite Star” by Weifang Municipal Government in 1995.
Tian Junxiang: He is good at making dragon kites, many of which have participated in international kite competitions on behalf of Weifang kites and won gold medals. Tian was conferred the title “Kite Star” by Weifang Municipal Government.
The Classification of Kites
According to their different shapes and frame structures, the kites are classified into five kinds:
Bunch-shaped Kite: It is made up of several kites of the same or different kinds which are connected one by one by strings. Its typical kind is dragon-kite.
Soft-winged Kite: The upper part of this kind of kite is made of bamboo strip, while the lower part is soft. The frame, usually relief-shaped, is suitable to make bird or insect kite.
Solid (tube-shaped) Kite: This kind of kite, composed of several connected wind-receiving sides or “tubes”, has a structure of distinct dimensions. Due to the folding frame, the angle of the flying kite can be freely adjusted as the wind-force changes.
Plank-shaped Kite: This kind of kite has flat structure with frame around. A long tassel is usually put to the lower part of the kite to help keeping balance. Since it is easier to make and fly, plank-shaped kite is more common than the other kinds.
Hard-winged Kite: The wing-shaped frame is formed by two horizontally placed bamboo strips, leaving a lower part in the middle for wind to go through. Different subjects make the other parts of the kites of the same kind different.