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Facial makeup of Peking Opera

By Zheng Jinran (China Daily)

09:49, June 03, 2013

Jiao Yingming and his son Jiao Xuefeng have carried on the family's connection with Peking Opera in their prosperous mask-making business. (Xinhua /Yang Shiyao)

A mask maker brings an ancient craft into the contemporary market, Zheng Jinran reports in Gu'an, Hebei province.

It's a traditional Chinese art, but the facial makeup of Peking Opera is finding a modern renaissance with the magical touch of Jiao Yingming.

His small workshop produces more than 500,000 Peking Opera masks every year. These reproductions of facial makeup are crafted from different materials, such as paper and crystal stones. At least 60 percent are sold abroad to about 30 countries, including the United States, Britain, France, Australia and South Korea.

"We usually get orders for thousands of masks six months ahead of Christmas," says the 49-year-old man from Gu'an county of Langfang, Hebei province.

His workshop has recruited about 40 people to meet the flood of orders every year. In 2012, the net income from his business reached 1.5 million yuan ($244,500).

To appeal to foreigners and young people in China, he has made innovations in the designs and the use of materials.

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