Embroidery has been a part of Chinese culture since the Shang Dynasty, but the criss cross stitch technique was invented only in the 1930s. This style uses stitches of different lengths and orientations to create a modern visual effect, very different to the close-packed rows of neatly aligned stitches in traditional embroidery. Traditional needle workers generally chose figurative subjects, and edges were clearly delineated.
Shang Xia has broken here the limitations of the embroidery tradition, creating a new language of needlework to express abstract, impressionist designs of light and shade
It took 3 years for the artisan to master the technique of splitting the silk thread into sixty very thin threads
The master is working at the same time on each panel so as to have consistency in the color shading and design, and is also sewing on both sides of the screen at the same time
Chateau de la Celle-Saint-Cloud, Chine: Excellence et savoir faire, la Celle-Saint-Cloud, 2014