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  • Exhibition Date:2019-05-18 ~ 2019-06-30
  • Exhibition Location:Exhibition Room A

From the beginning sentences of Xiushilu (Records of Lacquering, published in late Ming Dynasty), “Craftsman creates wares like god creates the nature, and the delicate and refined works are made painstakingly and meticulously, thus these wares shall made by the best of craftsman,” we know various crafts and wares of different looks, functions, and materials in human’s world are created to meet life needs. Artifact not only increases the organic value of a civilization, but also enriches the cultural base of daily life. Lacquerware is one of the oldest, practical and delicate crafts in the long history of Chinese. Extracted from tree resin, lacquerware can stand acid, alkali, insect bites, and corrosion, its bright and glorious quality last for thousand years. In China, the nature of lacquer had been recognized and been made into vessel since Neolithic, the history of lacquer could now be viewed in museums, where lacquerwares of dynasties are shown to people of its development and splendid looks.

However, no native lacquer culture could be found in pre-modern Taiwan, until the Han immigration brought the technique from Fuzhou and Quanzhou. During Japanese colonial, thanked to Mr. Tadasu Yamanaka’s effort, a kind of lacquerware “Penglai Coating” (literary means Taiwan Coating) was taught, produced and promoted by “Yamanaka’s Craft and Art of Lacquer Manufacturing Institute,” in Taichung and helped to establish the special place of Taichung in the development of Taiwanese lacquer culture. The Institute was the cradle to the first generation of Taiwanese lacquerware masters, who helped to deepen the root of local lacquer culture and led it to the world from Taiwan. Among whom was Mr. Gao-Shan Lai, whose family dedicated themselves to teach, promote and innovate Taiwanese lacquer art. Today, it is our pleasure to have Mr. Tzouh-Ming Lai, the second generation of Lai family, and his works exhibited at Taichung City Seaport Art Center.

Mr. Tzouh-Ming Lai soaked himself in the atmosphere of lacquer since a child, and realized the decline of lacquer art in Taiwan was caused by the hard-to –reach material, and complicated processes, that made it a high cost art with no commercial market. In the age when lacquer crafts could not make ends meet, Lai however chose to follow his father’s step. He learned lacquer technique in Japan, held workshops after his father’s name, and threw himself into the cultivation of next generations of lacquer masters, among whom are national lacquer awards winners. In addition, Lai pushed lacquer technique to a new state by combining it with materials includes pottery, metal and stone, made it a multi-faceted art. Furthermore, Lai published monographs of lacquerware knowledge and his experience in creation, helped to spread the universal education of lacquer technique.

In this exhibition, we can see the best selection of Lai’s, include works from different period of his life, works that show the different techniques, and of different materials. I wish through this opulent and comprehensive exhibition, audience could soaked themselves into the aesthetic of lacquerware art. Audience could also realize all Lai’s efforts to continue Taiwanese lacquer art in Taichung through the works, which now became the fruitful masterpieces in front of us.