Clay Statuette

The central China's Henan province produce clay statuette which can be blown as whistle. There are various kinds of clay statuettes with monkey being frequently seen. There are human face monkeys, monkeys with peach, monkeys with hoe, etc.

Under the local culture, this clay statuette is not only toying but also has cultural background.

In the picture, the face of the monkey is made with mold and the back and tail is made by hand. There are holes on the face and tail so that it can be blown as whistle. People draw facial features. The clay statuette has a pointed mouth, round eyes and red face with the upper part being exaggerated. It looks mysterious.

In Huaiyang of Central China's Henan province, clay statuettes are usually produced with two heads. People use hands to shape them and there are five steps in making a clay statuette, clay making, molding, shaping, coloring and decoration. The clay statuettes are colored in batch instead of one by one. For decoration, people use sorghum straw instead of brush to add colors, which usually include red, green, white, yellow, etc.

The picture shows the figures of two pigs placing above one another. People use white color to draw short lines and dots. The lengths of the pig noses are different. So are their ears. They look interesting and humorous. The portrayal is vivid and detailed.

In another county of Central China's Henan province, clay statuette is linked with local customs. Many clay statuettes are on sale on the lantern festival, the local ghost festival, etc. Local women tend to buy them.

The clay statuette there is mostly made by hand. People use chopsticks to designate the boundary line, dry it and then add color. Different colors are used for background and decoration. The picture shows some of the eight fairies, one of whom riding backward. People make eight fairies according to their own imaginations and background. The eight fairies shown in the picture look more like human farmers instead of fairies.

Some clay statuettes, which are animals, birds or people, can produce sound. Among the animals, horse is often focused. There are red horse, black horse, double-headed horse or pony. People are also the topic of figurines, which are mostly chosen from stories or legends.

The picture shows a common legend, eight fairies. As you can see, each fairy has its own feature. Some sit and some stand. Some are quiet and some are active. Craftsmen tend to portray these fairies in a realistic way. They also use different colors for the figurines according to their different background, status, clothing or decoration. The color used for people is different from those in animals. The production processes are done with neat and care. Generally speaking, the figurines lack flavor of countryside, yet they can still be considered good products.

Various topics are chosen to make clay figurines. One of topics is people from traditional local opera. Sometimes two or three figurine is made in one mould. This way, it is easy to remold it.

One of the common topics in the traditional opera is riding, which are usually placed in the house. With a knife in the rider's hand and usually about 60 centimeter tall, such figurine is said to ward off evils.

In the picture, the figurine of the riding has simple design and bright colors. There is no delicate description and the main colors used are red, yellow and black. It is interesting.

In north China's Hebei province, cock clay statuette is very famous. The cock shows enthusiasm and is one of the typical clay statuettes in north China.

There are three sizes for cock clay statuette, small, medium and large. The large one is about 25 centimeters and the small one is about 6 centimeters. It requires some ability to make the cock and the figurine.

The picture shows a cock with simple shape and bright colors. The colors of red and yellow cover most of the areas and the rest is in black. Paper cutting is also adopted. People try to display the cocky expression with the red cockscomb, black neck and sticking tail. They finally brush the surface of the clay with paint in no color. It gives people an atmosphere of luck and harmony.