CyberFair Project ID: 5628

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International Schools CyberFair Project Narrative
Title: New Eastern Esthetics-A Woodcarving Master-Jheng-Sing Jian
Category: 1. Local Leaders

School: Hua Shiun Elementary School
    Taoyuan, Taiwan, R.O.C.Taiwan

12 students, ages 10-11 worked together to complete this CyberFair project on February 1, 2009. They have participated in CyberFair in the following year(s): 2007,2008,2009

Classes and Teachers: Ms. Yu-Ting Hong, Ms. Shu-Ting Chen, Ms. Yu-Yi Cai

E-Mail contact:

Our School's Web Site:

Project Overview

1. Description of Our Community

Walking around the Shimen reservoir, people surrounded by mountains and rivers would feel like in the fairyland. Since Ching Dynasty, wooden articles have been famous in Taoyuan County. Wooden furniture business has gestated commercial pursuits and humanism connotation for over one hundred years in Taoyuan. Therefore, crafts have been rooting and growing in Taoyuan.

There are three advantages about wooden articles of Taoyuan County. First, driftwood provides higher quality source material. Second, the climate is moist. Third, the handicraft was followed by China masters. The upriver of Dahan River in Fushing Township in Taoyuan in which abounds with high quality wood such as Taiwan Incense Cedar, Juniper Wood, Black-heart Stone Wood, Camphorwood and Elm Wood. Although their driftwood looks useless, they are still the best material for woodcarving. So the carving turns driftwood into useful magic works New Eastern Esthetics—woodcarving Master Jheng-sing Jian In recent years, it has been impacting on traditional woodcarving business that factory owners established factories abroad, employed cheaper workers and had consistent works. The woodcarving workers always create works by themselves, but they still have strong volition to keep creating.

Many traditional businesses face bottlenecks and decline, but there are still more and more successful examples. On the basis of natural diversity and humanism environment in Taiwan, woodcarving designs are unique, copious and totally different from Occident.

We deeply believe that woodcarving artists in Taoyuan will create new Eastern esthetics by means of developing carving originality, developing towards visual art and creating new subject matters.

2. Summary of Our Project

Master Jeng-Shing Jian, the woodcarving artist, born in Dasi Township in Taoyuan County, has devoted himself to woodcarving for 30 years, studied carving all gestures of lotus leaves for 10 years and gotten many awards. In 2003, he got a Golden Award of Council of Drift Wood Sculpture Competition held by Agriculture Executive Yuan Forestry Bureau, and got many awards from arts exhibition in Taiwan and Da Dun fine arts exhibition. Just like many woodcarving workers, Master Jeng-Shing Jian started on wooden furniture, altars of Buddhist image. In few years, however, traditional wooden furniture declined, Master Jian turned his traditional sculptures into combining mechanics and esthetics. From curving realistic to abstract and deepening the image works, he gave his sculptures different lives. Carving the human feature by capricious lotus leaves to interpret the Buddha’s conception of “no appearance of a self” and “no appearance of others”. The carving of the face is shown with the hollow cutting skill to leave more imagination. All of these create new esthetics for Eastern woodcarving artist. Moreover, he got Taiwan Craft Family obtained by just few artists. We plan to interview Master Jeng-Shing Jian. We will study his growing process, craft learning progress and creation conception with the interview. We gather materials by interview and on-the-spot inspection. In the process of personal participation, we learn how to appreciate woodcarving creation of ‘showing image in shape’. We set an interactive website, so we can share materials and discuss on-line; moreover, we draw cards of woodcarving works carved by woodcarving artists. We want to tell the public the mood and the point of view to appreciate and preserve Taiwan woodcarving. Let people appreciate new Eastern esthetics and push carving in Taoyuan towards international stages.

3. Our Computer and Internet Access

A. Percentage of students using the Internet at home:more than 50%

B. Number of workstations with Internet access in the classroom:more than 6

C. Connection speed used in the classroom:dedicated connection

D. Number of years our classroom has been connected to the Internet:more than 6

E. Additional comments concerning your computer and/or Internet access (Optional):

Set an Interactive Website

We set a personalized interactive website that is called ‘Burins Battle against Wood’, share materials and photos instantly and leave messages and discuss online. Network Environment at School

There are 2 computer classrooms at our school and 70 computers for students to use. All computers are online, which is easy for us to discuss, search materials and print documents at school. In addition, one computer in each class has satisfied every teacher and student. Multimedia Environment of Our School

At our school, there are lots of computer software and hardware, including digital cameras, digital videos, scanners, sound recoding equipments, and the software of editing and rearranging images, films and sound effects. Network Environment in all Members’ Home

There are computers in every members’ home and connect with ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line). After school, we go on the study with e-mail, network hard discs and interactive website.

4. Problems We Had To Overcome

Collecting the Ancient Photos and Data Is Quite Difficult: Since Master Jian has involved in the woodcarving for over 30 years, many reports can’t be found on the net.? Fortunately, he reserves the papers so that we can adopt those for our research.? We also scan all these precious data for reservation through this research. To Be Inexperienced in Interview and Research Skills: At the beginning of the interview, we were so timid that our voice was not loud enough.? Then we changed the way to group interview and got improved.? After finished the interview, we supposed that we also met many terms that we could not understand.? Fortunately we had the support of the teachers and students so that we could finish all the interview contents.

Lacking for the Pre-Knowledge of the Woodcarving: Since the woodcarving course is studied from junior high school, for us 5th grade elementary school students are too unfamiliar.? As for the abstract woodcarving theme is also quite hard to understand, we do the research of the woodcarving before the interview so that we can understand it more and interview more smoothly, just like what Ru-hsuan, one of our members, said, “Although we can’t understand what the artist wants to express at the first sight, after knowing the meaning, we can realize his emotion in the artworks.”

The Difficulty of Making the Website: We are lack of the experience of making the website and flash, but under the support of Ms. Hong who is the website expert, we solve the problem smoothly.

Inexperienced in Using the Media Equipments: The digital camera is used for the record. At first, our equipments are quite old, maybe because our parents worry that they may be ruined. After the training of photography class of Ms. Hong and the experience of taking photos for 3 to 4 months, now we all use the new type digital camera and the photos are not blur

5. Our Project Sound Bite

WAN-TING Master Jian creates his artwork with driftwood to protect the environment, and we see the everlasting of the nature.

JIA-CUN I gain much from the research, and I think that I can apply the research skills that I’ve learned to record everything happened in this land. DE-RONG Master Jian created a huge sculpture “To be full of goodwill towards one another” to reveal the spirit of challenging.? He also said that we should be together and united, so we knew his concern to the country.

MENG -JIE To carve with the heart and thought will make a meaningful artwork. ??Master Jian’s work is just full of humane concern and I realize the importance of cherishing the life from it. JIA- CI If there’s no woodcarving master to pass down the woodcarving skills, the eastern fine art will be failed forever.? So the insistence of Master Jian is so great and touching. WEI-JEI Master Jian mentioned that in the process of the woodcarving, he’s quite solitary.? Although it’s such a lonely process, he still insists the woodcarving creation and impresses me a lot. YAN-SI The most impressing to me is Master Jian’s spirit to woodcarving.? Since he contacted the woodcarving from junior high school, he’s trying to develop various new carving skills to lead woodcarving art to a new direction.

6. How did your activities and research for this CyberFair Project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?

Our special study plan's research and the activity relate well with the curriculum.

1.The Integration with “Social Studies Field”? (1)Human V.S. Space To understand the formative background and the importance of woodcarving custom in Dasi. To illustrate the interactive relations with regions. (2)Human V.S. Time To know the important woodcarving artists in Taoyuan.

To explore the culture of woodcarving in Taoyuan and to appreciate its connotation. We explored the culture of woodcarving in Taoyuan. 2.The Integration with “Language Field”? (1)Knowledge Goal To understand the essential feature of the literacy style and the main way of inquiry.

(2)Skill Goal

To grasp the interview inquiry art. To reorganize?integrate and analyze the interview content in order to promote reading ability. To raise the personal reading thinking mode.

(3)Emotion Goal

To understand the life value and the spirit of the Age, and raise responsible and realistic attitudes of science. We proceed with the interview skill and the language training. 3.The Integration with “Art and Humanities Field”? (1)The Feelings towards the Hometown-Talk the Hometown;Picture the Hometown.

To explore the woodcarving artist’s theme and material of creation in Taiwan. To understand the woodcarving artist’s creation environment in Taiwan. To discuss the humanity background and the esthetic sense from Taiwan woodcarving artist’s work. To use the books and the Internet to search the data of the woodcarving artists in Taiwan. To know brillant records of the woodcarving artist, Master Jheng-sing Jian, in Taoyuan. To appreciate the sculptures and characteristics of the woodcarving artist, Master Jheng-sing Jian, in Taoyuan. (2)The Soils of the Hometown Are Fragrant

To discover the woodworks in our life. To discover the aesthetic feelings of the three-dimensional performance in sculptures. To exploration the woodcarving characteristics and the performance ways.

Project Elements

1) What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your CyberFair project?

1.Presentation (1)We use Internet Explorer to search the data. (2)We reorganize and integrate the correlative data. (3)We learn the PowerPoint to make the presentation. 2.The Eternal Memory (1)We understand the basic functions and learn how to photograph well. (2)We can use the cameras correctly and select the suitable scenes. (3)We can use the photographs to record our life, promoting the joys of our life. 3.Memory Continuing (1)We can share the memory of the photographs and the pictures (2)We can transform the plane record into the three-dimensional performance. (3)We can feel the differences between the instantaneous memory and the continuing memory, and present them by performance. (4)We can join the change stochastically, which add interest to the performances.

4.the technical equipment that we use telephones-contact with team members,interviewcomputers computer-process and archive the data, manufacture the homepages network-upload and download the data?discussion, signal communications scanners-scan and archive the reference printer-print the questionnaires and the research data digital still cameras-record the photographs(still image) of the visit, interview and activity digital still video-record the movie(dynamic data)of the visit, interview and activity tape recorders-record the voice of the interview and activity 5.the computer software that we use the name of the software-purpose Macromedia Dreamweaver-edit and manage the homepages Macromedia Flash-manufacture the animation Ulead PhotoImpact?Photoshop-process the image Acdsee-manage the photographs Microsoft PowerPoint-manufacture the PowerPoint Microsoft Word-process the word data Internet Explorer-browse the homepages and inquire(search)?upload and download the data Microsoft Movie Maker-edit and manufacture the digital photographs and the movies

2) In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your CyberFair project both on-line and in person.

Curriculum deepen students’ knowledge and sensitivity to art culture and aesthetics connotation of woodcarving We hope students take part in project research as a role of little woodcarving master. From Unceasing collecting data to experienced visiting the woodcarving exhibition of Taoyuan Culture Bureau, students make Power point, poster, and homepages, so that deepen relative knowledge of local woodcarving culture and sculptors.

By means of experience and practice, students sense the creation process of woodcarving artist’s and the work’s implication. ‘Little woodcarving master’ inning was held so that students could participate in the creative activities of woodcarving and experience the feeling and sense of being a woodcarving artist. Furthermore, their works were shown on the website of our school, in order to spread to other students and teachers.

In order to seek the eastern new aesthetic and changes in the creation process included in the Master Jian’s works, we personally visited Master Jian and others caring woodcarving culture. Master Jian’s idea and word not only deeply touch numerous people, but also arouse all of people’s memory and care towards woodcarving.

Through our skillful hands, we design some hand-made ‘small cards’ which make all students and those who want to know the woodcarving to feel Master Jian’s design aesthetic. We also expect that far more other woodcarving artists can create brand new sculptures full of eastern aesthetic, which make a culture feature of woodcarving in Taoyuan.

3) What has been the impact of your project on your community?

The importance of preserving the traditional culture.

Master Jian has been devoting to teach traditional woodcarving, but he still is as lonely as one bird on the very long way of woodcarving art. Fortunately, Jian Chen Zeo, the son of Master Jian, join the innovative line and he said that ‘I don’t hope the legacy is broken, but even create my own style and be myself.’ In fact, Master Jian would not create alone, because not only his son, but also us, these vigorous pupils, will last our passion towards the woodcarving. The artist’s influence to our nation and society; the aesthetic comes from touch to life.

In the process of the research, to the best of my touch is his strong loving care for people, stuff, the hometown, and the nation. When he gets a piece of wood, constructing takes further more time than carving in order to make it become unique. Each of his works, from concrete to image, is full of philosophy and Zen-ness in all respects. Art is derived from sentiment, and experience in life, so we should cultivate a sensitive mind towards humanity, just like his saying that ‘some carve for making their living, but I am interested in carving and take it as a part of my life.’

Power and wave of the eastern new aesthetic; changes and innovation of design elements

Eastern aesthetic actually is a kind of expression of philosophy, thinking of life, that is, the inclination of symbol, image, beauty and truth fascinate deeply the west, but they can not learn it well, because it is derived from much older and deeper culture nutrition. As Master Jian said going, ‘while innovating, learning from a master is necessary.’ In the process of creation, we do not forget to look our own roots and soils, so that we can actually create our own unique design aesthetic.

4) How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?

Master Jheng-Sing Jian: Thanks Master Jheng-Sing Jian to provide his certificates and the sculptures to us. In addition, for the best light, Master Jian is also very enthusiastic to bring in and carry out the woodcarving works for us to photo his woodcarving work.

Because Master Jian provides us with many precious suggestions of woodcarving knowledge and the homepage content, this enables us to be possible to complete this research.

The Parents and Residents in the Community: We still want to thank them for finding time in such a busy work to share their stories, accept our interview, and cope with our activities; we cannot smoothly finish our project without them.

The Principal of Our School: Thanks for our principal supporting our project.

Tutors: Ms. Yu-Ting Hong, Ms. Shu-Ting Chen, Ms. Yu-Yi Cai and Mr. Ye-Tailin, they gave us a lot of assistance by using their spare time, and they brought us together to do interview and explained many things to us again and again. We really appreciate them to let us learn a lot.

5) Discoveries, Lessons and Surprises (Optional)

It is very touching to learn things through our own strive. From this project, we study the skills of research as well.

The woodcarving art has been regarded as an important human asset which continued from generations to generations. By interviewing Master Jian, we know the woodcarving art is focused on the combination of aesthetics and extension of mechanics with creative themes and skills. Many people often asked that what the meaning of the work is. Actually, how wonderful it is!

Woodcarving art is the important humanities property which preserves the traditional culture technology.

After interviewing Master Jain, we know the woodcarving artist should have observation of the natural scenery and the subtle changes in its format and color. Therefore, he has found the way to reveal his own feeling.

By this special study, we learn from Master Jain that an artistic worker should be with great patience as well as have observation about slight natural scenery

Moreover, we have learned the contribution and the inheritance of the Eastern tradition art from the community leader.


View our CyberFair Project (Project ID: 5628)

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