Understand the Lion Dance Culture from Foshan Lion Arts
Foshan China 2023-11-29 18:17

Recently, Chancheng's Glory Singping Li has become a hub, featuring delicacies such as Huangjunji Chencun rice chunks, Huanjie Lunjiao cake, Zhengxin double-skinned milk, Jun'an steamed pig, and Grandma beef offal. This culinary extravaganza showcases a national celebration of gastronomy.

After tasting the delicious food, many food lovers stepped into the Foshan Ancient Town Characteristic Town Exhibition Hall, and they were surprised at the delicate dancing lion, and have a further understanding of the lion culture.

The traditional lion is divided into Northern and Southern styles, and the southern lion is called "Awakening Lion", which originates from Foshan, and the crafting of Foshan lion belongs to the color of Guangfu folk craft.

Foshan lion head crafting is originated from the ancient town of Foshan in the Ming Dynasty, and rose in the Qianlong Period of the Qing Dynasty. At this time, lion head is divided into three categories: Wen lion, Wu lion and Teen lion.

Wen Lion with Liu Bei, Guan Yu as the facial makeup, showing a pure kind, gentle attitude. The lion performance we usually see mostly feature the traditional Wen Lion Head; Wu lion with Zhang Fei as the face mask, reflecting the aggressive, brave character; Teen lion is a lion-head mask for children to play with.

As an ancient traditional handicrafts in Guangdong province, Foshan Lion Head has a history of more than 200 years with the development of lion dance culture. After the innovative transformation of generations of artists, Foshan Lion Head has become a famous handicrafts at home and abroad, and is a typical folk art with Oriental colors. In 2008, Foshan Lion Head Colored Crafting was included in the second batch of national intangible cultural heritage list.

The Foshan lion dance, representing an important lineage of Southern Lion Dance, possesses a majestic and lively style with auspicious significance. It enjoys a widespread popularity among the masses in Foshan, and there is a saying that goes, "Every village has lion dances, and every township has its own lion dance troupe."

The decoration pays attention to the character. In the color of red, yellow, green and other primary colors, and with black harmonization, it is clearly layered in a strong contrast, bright and harmonious. It is these characteristics that make it a very romantic art carrier.

Foshan Lion Head is a very important tool in the folk festival activities and mass martial arts sports activities in Lingnan area, and the competition sports in the name of the lion head are popular all over China, Southeast Asia and even the Chinese residential areas in Europe and America, playing a positive role in the inheritance and development of traditional culture and communication between Chinese and foreign cultures.

In the past period of time, in order to cope with the frequent lion art competition activities, and reduce the production cost and the weight of the lion head, many lion heads are increasingly simplified in the production of materials, writing color and assembly, and obviously lost the traditional style characteristics. At the same time, there are not many inheritors who are skilled in traditional production techniques, and the problem of lack of successors has been quite prominent, which needs to be protected urgently.

"In terms of curation, we hope that the overall tone of the exhibition will conform to the aesthetics of the young generation and attract more young people to join the ranks of protecting and inheriting intangible cultural heritage." Li Minying, deputy general manager of Foshan Folk Art Research Association, said that the lion dance culture in Chancheng is very strong, and this exhibition aims to let young audiences feel the charm of lion dance culture in Foshan.

As the origin and core bearer of Lingnan Guangfu culture, Chancheng is also one of the birthplaces of Lion Dance, with rich lion culture and prosperous lion dance activities. In recent years, Chancheng has promoted the creative transformation and innovative development of lion dance culture through the planning of lion dance culture exhibition, the holding of the Chinese Dragon and Lion Competition, and the creation of lion Dance culture IP, and constantly expanded the cultural influence of lion dance culture.


Revisor 丨Eleanor, Lynn

Photo |  Foshan News and Media Center