As one of the earliest synthetic materials, glass has gone through countless civilizations and times, and has been used to create extraordinary gems in the most splendid places, shining its surroundings with its array of colors.
Glass is living proof of exchanges between the East and the West. As far back as over 2,000 years ago, glass has come into existence in China. The sheer quantity of faience objects and glass beads unearthed evidences the early contact between oriental and occidental cultures. In 200 BC, the flourishing Silk Road pushed such exchanges to a new high. From 3rd to 7th century AD, blown glass from the Sasanian Empire became a symbol of wealth for Chinese nobility. Glass blowing technology thus managed to thrive in a short period. Since the 13th century AD, colored glass, known to the Chinese as ‘liuli’, has been mass-produced in Zibo City of Shandong Province and other places in China.
The development of ‘liuli’ (colored glass) industry and art relies both on technical inheritance and on new explorations. This exhibition contains 48 works independently created by Chinese ‘liuli’ artists, which encompass techniques such as interior and exterior painting, blowing, and carving. Blending the spirit and theme of traditional handicrafts with the temper of the times, the exhibition unveils the beauty of ‘liuli’ (colored glass) based on its time-honored oriental culture and contemporary artistic innovation.