Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum-Shiqiao Ancient Paper-making

Intangible Cultural Heritage Museum

Shiqiao Ancient Paper-making

by Live in Guizhou

Image Source: Eyesnews

Shiqiao Village, Nangao Township, Danzhai County, Qiandongnan Prefecture, Guizhou Province, enjoys a good reputation at home and abroad due to its ancient paper-making technology and freehand operation. It is called “the hometown of ancient paper-making in China”.

It needs more than 70 processes to make white leather paper from raw materials to completed paper by hand, while its production skills are passed down from generation to generation only by the words and deeds of the master. Furthermore, raw materials are processed by using sun, rain and dew, which are all natural methods without adding industrial raw materials.

Shiqiao ancient paper-making make use of rich fabric hemp and water conditions and set troughs in the bank of the cliff or natural caves to make paper.There is no factory except the paper baking room, and processes are all done by hands. Therefore, the workshop is simple with small investment, easy to operate and pollution-free.The paper produced is white, flexible, with tensile resistance, flat surface and strong water absorption, which is suitable for painting and calligraphy works.

In 2006, Shiqiao ancient paper-making method, known as the “living fossil”, was listed as one of the first batch of national intangible cultural heritage protection by the Ministry of Culture. In 2017, Shiqiao Village was judged a 3A national tourist attraction. In 2019,Shiqiao Village was judged a cultural industry demonstration village by the Provincial Department of Culture and Tourism. In 2021, Shiqiao Village was selected as the third batch of provincial key villages for rural tourism in Guizhou.

As an intangible cultural heritage, the ancient paper-making technique carries the unique wisdom and diligence of the villagers of Shiqiao and has left the deepest cultural memory for future generations.