Illusion and reality : how the Chinese artform of shadow puppetry can be innovated through media design : Master of Design, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand

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Massey University
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Chinese shadow puppetry is a type of classical performance opera with 2,000 years of history (Jin, 2011). Cultural heritage is a cultural achievement of a nation and an important symbol of cultural identity (Feather, 2006). Unfortunately, the complicated artform and lack of innovation means that Chinese shadow puppetry has gradually declined in recent years. This increases the urgency of addressing the issue of preservation and the maintenance of cultural heritage (Chen, 2007). Nowadays most knowledge of the art of shadow puppetry is disappearing with master artists aging, and the younger generations not having a good knowledge of these skills, which has resulted in cultural heritage facing extinction (Rollins, 2015). Protecting cultural heritage has positive effects on studying the development of human civilization and cultural progress (Feather, 2006). With traditional artists aging, it is necessary to make a younger generation aware of the problems of cultural loss and the importance of cultural heritage (Rollins, 2015). This project aims to explore shadow puppetry art through digital media design, progressing and disseminating traditional culture in a modern environment. It also aims to educate the audience about Chinese shadow puppetry and encourage them to enjoy shadow puppetry traditions through interactive design and digital media.
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