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Cement folk sculptures donated to Chongqing museums

(People's Daily Online)    14:18, April 12, 2019

Yu's sculpture depicting the Potala Palace in Lhasa. (Photo/Chinanews.com)

Craftsman Yu Shihua recently donated 35 cement sculptures to museums in Chongqing, southwest China, Chongqing Evening News reported on April 11.

Yu was a master of cement sculpture and dedicated himself to this form of folk art. Over the last 25 years of his life, he created over 1,000 pieces in both Chinese and western styles.

The artist's late wife, Xu Haizhen, said that he often collected litter and made it a part of his sculptures. For example, he turned old ice cream sticks and single-use chopsticks into handrails and outer walls of a cement castle.

In July 2009, Yu’s technique of making sculptures out of cement was listed among the second batch of intangible cultural heritages by Dadukou district of Chongqing.

Eight years later, the folk artist passed away, leaving behind an unfulfilled wish of donating all his art to society.

Now his final wish has come true, as, during the recent Qingming Festival, his family donated the sculptures to the China Three Gorges Museum and Dadukou Museum based in Chongqing.

Yu's sculpture depicting the Chongqing People's Grand Hall. (Photo/Chinanews.com)

Cement sculpture is an art form that combines the techniques of clay sculpture and bonsai, said Chen Bo from Dadukou Museum.

Yu’s sculptures boast local features, with some depicting the landscape of mountainous Chongqing, he told Chongqing Evening News.

A special exhibition featuring Yu’s art is ongoing at the museum and is scheduled to end on June 28, said Li Guohong, curator of the museum, adding that when the exhibition ends, the pieces will go on a tour around middle schools in the Dadukou district.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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