Hua Manrong, a master bamboo weaver from Jingjiang city – a county-level city, administered by Taizhou city, in East China's Jiangsu province – is dedicated to preserving the traditional craft and showcasing its excellence.
Hua Manrong works deftly at fashioning a piece. [Photo/zhjjwx.jsjjw.cn]
At 73 years old, Hua has gained a reputation in the foreign trade market for his meticulously crafted bamboo products, which are highly sought after by enthusiasts worldwide.
In the 1960s and 1970s, Jingjiang was known as the "hometown of bamboo" and provided abundant resources for craftsmen like Hua.
Through years of hard work, Hua has mastered the intricate processes of bamboo weaving, from selecting and splitting to weaving and trimming the bamboo splits.
In the late 1980s, Hua became one of the pioneers in Jingjiang to produce bamboo items for foreign trade. He even established a production line, employing over 40 workers at its peak and gaining support from the local community. Hua ensured consistent quality by creating hundreds of molds based on orders, showcasing his craftsmanship.
However, as living standards improved, the market for bamboo weaving decreased and few in Jingjiang now pursue the craft.
Despite this, Hua remains steadfast in his commitment to his work and heritage. With only one dedicated apprentice, he is determined to enable the world to appreciate the excellent craftsmanship of his ancestors.