Chinese Art – Chinese Batik

Chinese Batik is also called La Ran in China. Researches show batik originates from ancient China. It was then called La Xie. As early as in Qin and Han Dynasties, people in southwestern minority regions of China, finding that wax can prevent from dyeing, proficiently mastered the craft of batik. They used bees wax and worm wax as material in preventing dyeing.

By the time of Dong Han Dynasty, the batik skill was rather mature. By Xi Jin Dynasty, a dozen of color batik products could be produced. In Tang Dynasty, batik prevailed. The batik skill has been passed on generation after generation in the minority regions of Guizhou province and it has been spread widely across different regions.

Design of traditional Guizhou batik is based on realism. The artistic language is simple, pure, straightforward and powerful. Especially, its design pattern is free from confinement of details. Bold variation and exaggeration are employed. Such variation and exaggeration are out of the simple but wide imagination and it is full of charms. Batik designs are quite rich and colorful. Most of them are taken from actual life or stories, typical of the traditional culture.

Thin blade of bronze knife, dipped in heated wax, freely draws designs on white cloth, which prevents from dyeing. Then colors needed are dyed on the cloth. Later, the cloth is put in hot water to boil and clear designs would appear on the cloth.

The traditional batik designs are often evenly and harmoniously distributed on four sides. There are various patterns but in good order. The overall effect is stressed instead of paying too much attention to the details. The design patterns are of rhythmical beauty since the lines and points are orderly arranged. The peculiar batik ice line adds more charm to it. Apart from the traditional blue, there are many other colorful batik. The ice line is characteristic of batik. The formation of ice lines is that wax lines are destroyed in constant rolling and dyeing of the cloth, which soaks into the lines of the cloth, leaving natural patterns on the cloth. The natural patterns are enchantingly beautiful. Like fingerprints of human beings, they are different from each other, which further augments the depth of its beauty.