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Ming Qiu Chen

Paper cuttings are one of China’s most popular forms of visual arts. Paper and scissors are the usual tools used, but sometimes an X-acto knife is utilized. This art form can be traced back to the 6th century. However, it only became popular centuries after that. The art is used for decorations, presents, and religious symbols. They are widely used for important festivals, and homes have them adorning their entrances.

Ming Qiu Chen learned this special skill as a child from her grandmother in China. She became one of the country’s outstanding artists. When Ming came to the USA in 2004, she was eager to introduce her creations to the people of Virginia.  After a few years away, she is back in Charlottesville, selling her work at C’ville Arts.

All of Ming’s cuts are made first, then glued on a background paper. Those designs made with many colors are cut from white paper first. Intricate cuts are needed to separate colors and prevent running.


Each color is painstakingly applied and dried separately. A brush with a few hairs is used. Each piece takes many hours to complete.

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