Yangliuqing Town, an ancient town with a history over thousand years lies in the western suburb of Tianjin. From the Chongzhen period (1628 - 1644) of the Ming Dynasty, peasants and folk artists of New Year pictures began to collect sketches and carved wooden blocks and created unique craftsmanship of New Year pictures. The town is 15 kilometers away form the Tianjin and it is easy accessible.
The Yangliuqing New Year pictures
Being one of the most excellent block New Year pictures in the folk art of China, Yangliuqing New Year pictures originated from the Yangliuqing Town in the early 17th century. So, it was named after the town.
The Yangliuqing New Year pictures are characterized by the combination of block print and colored hand drawing. The painting tradition passed down from the Song (960 - 1279) and Yuan (1271 - 1368) dynasties and the integration of techniques of Gongbi figure paintings (gongbi is a traditional Chinese realistic painting characterized by fine brushwork and close attention to details) into the folk New Year pictures enabled an organic combination of wood engraving with hand painting.
Being ingenious and unique in composition, fresh and smooth in line, vivid and life-like in form, and strong and rich in the flavor of life, Yangliuqing New Year pictures generally take ancient beauties, lovely children, folk customs or stories from classical operas, myths and legends as their source materials.
The New Year Pictures perform an abroad of subject, such as congratulation, happiness, luckiness humorous and so on and expresses the best wishes of people expecting the beautiful future.
The Shi Mansion in Yangliuqing Town was the old residence of the Shi family, one of the eight prominent families in Tianjin in the Qing Dynasty, and was called the "No.1 Mansion in North China."
It covers an area of 6,080 square meters and has four rows of buildings of antique flavor boasting exquisite brick, wood and stone carvings. The mansion has been opened as Yangliuqing Folk Customs Museum. The street will be 300 meters long, and cover an area of 20,000 square meters, on both sides of which will stand houses in Ming and Qing styles, with a total floor space of 10,000 square meters.