Photography Exhibition on Traditional Chinese Woodworking

By Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum

From the invention of photography technology in the 18th century to the time just before the development of digital technology in the 21st century, taking photo was a very extravagant thing for Chinese people. Because of the scarcity of film, most of the photos that Chinese people took are personal or family portraits, which are used as souvenirs, but there are very few photos reflecting different sectors of society. Thanks to the photos taken by some of the early Western photographers, such as Sidney Gambo, that we could see the real living conditions and social status of the Chinese working people at that time more directly. Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum collects all kinds of woodworking photography, and we hope this exhibition can reflect the hard work and efforts of the Chinese people.

Working Carpenters, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The woodworkers were chiseling holes in the timber.

Child Sawing Wood, Unknown, Republic of China (1912–1949), From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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A child was sawing wood with a carpentry's saw.

Working Carpenters, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The young intellectuals in the countryside were doing woodworking.

Teaching Carpenter, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The master was teaching his apprentices the carpentry skills.

Working Carpenter, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Scene of carpentry work in northern Jiangsu Province.

Students Learning Woodworking, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Students were learning woodworking skills at school.

Working Carpenters, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The carpenters were working in a wood processing factory.

Woodworking Themed Calendar, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Illustration of a planing child in a woodworking themed calendar.

Group Photo of Lumberjacks, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Group photo of workers from No.602 Logging Factory of the Forest Industry Bureau in 1957 in Shimian County, Ya'an City, Sichuan Province.

Working Carpenters, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Working scene of workers in Fuzhou Lumber Yard.

Working Carpenter, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers on the Raft, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Equipment and workers of Fuzhou Lumber Yard on the wooden raft.

Woodworkers on the Raft, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Carpenters Sawing Wood, Unknown, Republic of China (1912–1949), From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers were sawing large pieces of wood outdoors.

Construction of a Wooden Building, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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In 1958, a three-story building without steel, cement and bricks appeared in Harbin.

Students Sawing Wood, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Students were learning how to saw wood.

Carpenters Sawing Wood, Unknown, Republic of China (1912–1949), From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Two men were sawing wood in front of Wenshengxing Coal Mine in Tianjin.

Woodworking Postcard, Unknown, Qing Dynasty (1616–1912), From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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After cutting down the timber, woodworkers of the Qing Dynasty carried them down from the mountain.

Master Teaching Woodworking, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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An eight-level woodworking master was teaching woodworking knowledge to the apprentices.

Carpenters Sawing Wood, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Two men were pulling a large saw to cut wood.

Working Carpenters, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The masters of the woodworking repair workshop were repairing the door frame.

"Little Woodworker" Paper Cutting, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Paper cutting of two children driving nails made by the art group of Tianjin No.59 Middle School.

Cutting and Sawing Wood, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Three comrades set up tents in the field to cut and saw wood.

Poster of Women Carpenters, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Poster of female carpenters criticizing Liu Shaoqi's idea of "women's uselessness".

Photo of Lumberjacks, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The lumberjacks in a forestry farm in the Jianghua Yao Autonomous County of Hunan Province are full of revolutionary pride and ready to fight for a greater future.

Young Lumberjacks, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The young intellectuals who settled down in a production brigade were logging outside.

Li Ruihuan and Workers Carrying Out Technological Innovative Activities, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Li Ruihuan (front right), a national model worker and director of the Beijing Construction and Wood Factory Reform Committee, who is known as "Luban of the modern time", created the "simple woodworking calculation method" more than ten years ago. Since the Cultural Revolution, he and the general public had continued to carry out technological innovative activities, making a variety of equipment and tools for unloading wood, which was welcomed by workers.

Ma Changjia Imparting Woodworking Skills to Young Workers, Unknown, 1980s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Ma Changjia (second from the right), a retired carpenter and Communist Party member in Shenyang Bridge Factory of Liaoning Province, declined the high salary of 150 yuan per month from a contractor team and took the initiative to run a collective enterprise of educated youth to teach young workers skills, which was praised by the people. Ma Changjia is a level 7 woodworker who not only can direct the construction of civil buildings, but is also good at measuring and drawing.

Female Carpenter Xu Xiaoying, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Xu Xiaoying, a young intellectual in Hangzhou, has grown up to be a lumberjack who can use chainsaw.

Carpenter Sawing Wood, Unknown, Republic of China (1912–1949), From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworker was sawing boards with a large frame saw.

Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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"People are in the rain, aiming at one side." Labor's Day souvenir in Shenhe Woodworking Machinery Factory.

Poster of Woman Carpenter, Unknown, Cultural Revolution, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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A male carpenter is teaching woodworking skills to a female carpenter.

Working Carpenter, Unknown, 1950s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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A carpenter was pushing the circular saw.

Woodworker Repairing Furniture, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers were going through streets and alleys to repair furniture for people.

Woodworker Repairing Furniture, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworker Repairing Furniture, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Soldiers Helping Students, Unknown, 1970s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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The soldiers from "The Good Eighth Company of Nanjing Road" (“南京路上好八连”) were helping the "little red soldiers" (红小兵) of Shanghai Tianjin Road Primary School set up a woodworking group to teach them the spirit of "leading a plain, hardworking life" and to enhance their ability to resist the corrosive influence of bourgeois ideology.

Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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Woodworkers' Group Photo, Unknown, 1960s, From the collection of: Zhenjing Traditional Woodwork Museum
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