Sat, Mar 08, 2014 - Page 5 News List

FEATURE: Craftsman brings art to temple roofs

HONING HIS SKILLS:Over the past 30 years, the master ceramic mason has worked on many of the nation’s major temples and several buildings abroad

By Lai Hsiao-tung and Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

“I was able to overcome my fear of heights and I successfully completed a very challenging job,” he said.

“Our projects are mostly on rooftops. So we have to endure the hot sun and high temperatures in summer and cold winds in winter. In our trade, it is common to get sunburn and blisters. However, these things cannot diminish my passion for this traditional craft,” Yang said.

He has already gained a good name as Taiwan’s “Master of Ceramic Applique,” but Yang is determined to keep on learning.

“Art is a limitless life-long education. One must always innovate and keep up with the new, strive for improvement and to further refine one’s skills,” he said.

“Nowadays, young people are not able to toil under tough conditions and do arduous work. The traditional art forms are slowly dying out,” he said.

“The government and the public sector say they have no funding to give assistance, so it is quite difficult to promote and encourage this craft,” he said.

“It is a shame to see this situation. I really hope some benefactors can come in and help pass on skills to the young generation to preserve this traditional art,” Yang said.

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