This character of Shadow play presents a typical image of the Zhuang Yuan (Superior Scholar) in ancient China. He wears a fancy robe with lot of decoration and a hat with two wings, which is a design specificly for Zhuang Yuan.
Zhuang Yuan is the title for the highest degree to ancient Chinese students. The ancient examination system in China was called imperial examination, which students would take many examinations ranged from local area to the center government. The highest degree only could be earned after the final examination conducted by the emperor. After winning this title, the emperor would appoint the Zhuang Yuan.
Nicely framed, just attach string and hang it on your wall.
The shadow play or leather silhouette play is a type of drama, which has its roots in China.
Shadow puppets are made of leather instead of wood for the simple reason that leather is much lighter, easier to manipulate and carry around. The trunk, head and limbs of a puppet are separately carved but joined together by thread to be manipulated. The leather puppets are painted with various colors to show their different qualities, kind or wicked, beautiful or ugly.
Our puppets are made purely by hand in shadow plays birthplace, Hua County in Shaanxi Province. Xue Hongquan, one of the best-known shadow play performer as well as puppet maker, is leading our workshop filled with the best artisans. The artisans still use the same traditional methods passed on for generations.