A Vessel to Carry Riches - A Symbol to Carry Culture

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The Immortal Virtues of the Chinese Ding

The True Meaning of the "Ding" in Chinese Culture

In interpreting clues of our history left by our ancestors, we strive to cherish and preserve cultural wisdoms that define who we are today and guide our future.  Why the ding is such a sacred symbol of virtue and honor is revealed in the many artistic expressions of the artifact.  This year, LIULI studio travels back in time yet again to unearth the secrets of culture and knowledge and combine them with contemporaneity to craft something both that speaks to heritage as well as uniting a culture in modernity.

The Nine Ding of Profound Virtue series draws from emperor Xia Yu’s most profound feat of symbolic expression, perfecting the expression of their spirit in crystal glass.  Four millennia ago, a culturally united civilization met on nine stoic principles that guide a nation of peoples to harmony and everlasting balance.  In appreciating the splendor of these contemporary works, one realizes that after four thousand years of technology and change those very principles remain unchanged today.  Being liberal but with dignity, possessing a mild yet firm disposition, acting straightforward but with kindness… these are all strengths in the eye of a respectable nation, organization, or family.

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Whether your life’s commitment is in art or politics, in medicine or technology, LIULI studio artists recreate a vision drawn from millennia-old wisdom that guides you in times fraught with turbulence and unrest.  The modern-day artifacts in this collection, crafted to be artworks that move the heart and the spirit, reminds that especially in an age rife with trouble, it is our responsibility to uphold the culture and virtues passed down by our forefathers.

LIULI presents… “The Nine Ding of Profound Virtue.” 

A Vessel to Carry Riches - A Symbol to Carry Culture

 The True Meaning of the “Ding” in Chinese Culture

Tradition teaches us many things.  It teaches us how to care for our land and one another, imparting the wisdom of those who have come before us.  It teaches us the histories—both written and oral—of our people, using stories to define and identify who we are today.  Tradition is the power behind which new stories are built, and old ones are retold.  Bringing all of those values together is art.  What we describe now as “artifacts” of ancient cultures can be understood as one and the same as the “art” of modern culture.  They are symbols of our way of life.

Of the many artifacts which tell of heroes and legends that came before us is the ancient Chinese “Ding.”  This cauldron-like vessel, often displayed as a mantlepiece with which to honor ancestors and the heavens, comes in many forms—each indicative of an era, ruler, or zeitgeist.  The vessel has been used to carry riches and wealth, containing the things that we hold dearest to our hearts.  However, the vessel is often used as a decorative statement, containing what seems to be nothing inside.  On such occasions we find that what is contained within the artifact is in fact the intangible… the spiritual.  As such, Dings are most often associated with being the most sacred of family heirlooms.

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These values transgress mere codes of conducts to reflect all of human nature and a harmonious civilization.  The dings serve as artifacts representing our deepest principles, drawing upon those principles to guide our strength.  Four millennia later, we may find that not only have these values been unchanged, but they are more crucial than ever in aligning human paths with one another.  That is why such art, artifacts, and symbols not only carry our greatest riches, but our deepest values.  They are the symbols that carry our culture and wisdom.  LIULI aspires to not only pay respect to that timeless tradition, but to honor it in every act of creation we make, continuing to create art for the good of the heart.

 


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