Summer in Ithaca / by Jen Hyde

 Gao Ling Gong Shan Dongba Paper Village, Yunnan, 2014

Gao Ling Gong Shan Dongba Paper Village, Yunnan, 2014

This summer I will attend the Image Text Workshop and Symposium at Ithaca College. I have been asked to bring in-progress or found material to develop in a collaborative environment, and mining my research archives I found several sheets of Dongba Paper that I purchased from a Naxi papermaker in Tengchong, in the Yunnan Province last June. 

Dongba paper was traditionally produced by the Naxi minority in western Yunnan. In recent years the patent recipe for the paper, which did not belong to any individual, was sold to a Han Chinese man. The paper is now sold as a local souvenir in "Ancient Towns" within cities like Tengchong and Lijiang, along with a fictionalized history of the Naxi minority group. In Tengchong, the Naxi people collaborated with TAO Architects to construct a paper museum. Made of paper, the structure resembles more of a pavilion than a permanent monument, but it houses the rich history of the Naxi group, and their papermaking practice.