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The World of Bamboo

China is known for its rich tradition and many crafts. For many Western designers these crafts are a great source of inspiration. However, many Chinese crafts are facing major challenges. There are too few substitutes, and there is a lack of innovation.

Bamboo handicraft VS Westeren innovation 

Lulu Fan and Karin van Paassen work as co-organizer with Fine Art College Shanghai University (hereafter: SU) and create possibilities for Chinese handicraft masters to work with contemporary Dutch designers in order to find new applications and processing of Chinese traditional handicraft, developing new products with innovative designs and new markets to tap in. The first edition is about bamboo was held in Shanghai and Deqing from 16 – 29 may 2016.

Deqing bamboo city

Deqing city is one of China’s largest bamboo plantations and is also one of the largest suppliers of bamboo products. Many craft masters in Deqing work very well with bamboo. Deqing city is aware of the fact that many crafts might be lost in the near future and there is serious lack of innovation. Therefore they launched a partnership with SU to stimulate and innovate their local bamboo crafts industry.


This project is an experimental journey searching a new identity of bamboo in handcraft and design. Designers worked closely with handicraft masters in Shanghai and Deqing to come to an innovative concept, that could be a new design, it can also be a new material or an undiscovered usage of bamboo. Selected Dutch designers are:


Students are also an important part of this project, they are the future of Chinese handicrafts. Student from Shanghai university and The Hague University will take part of this project in Shanghai and Deqing. Students from The Hague University are from Prototype & Handicraft of Industrial Design.