China News Service, Yinchuan, May 30. Title: Visiting the Ningxia Museum: The reinstatement master regenerates the cultural relics with both hands

  Author Yu Jing

  The dialogue between people and things that spans thousands of years, and the restoration process of years and decades. They are skilled craftsmen, who use their handicrafts to sew the gaps in history, so that the cultural relics that have been sleeping for thousands of years gradually wake up in their hands and regain their "new life". On May 29, 2020, the reporter walked into the protection and restoration laboratory of the Museum of the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, unveiled the mystery of the restoration of cultural relics, and visited the group of artisans accompanied by cultural relics.

  As of 2019, the total number of cultural relics in the collection of the Ningxia Museum is 51,298, 3551 precious cultural relics, including 157 first-class cultural relics. Hu Xuanwu carved stone tomb gate, gilt bronze bull, and Lishi Zhiwen support were identified as national treasure-level cultural relics. The collection quantity and quality of Xixia cultural relics and northern bronzes have attracted the attention of the cultural industry.

  According to a survey by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage, more than 30 million cultural relics in the national cultural relics system have been damaged to varying degrees. However, China has only 2,000 people engaged in the restoration of cultural relics, and many museums have almost no professional personnel for the restoration of cultural relics.

  In the Ningxia Museum, there are a total of 12 cultural relic restoration specialists, who are responsible for the restoration of the cultural relics in the collection. They bury their heads at the desk every day, and use careful, patient and professional technical means to rebirth the glorious historical witnesses that have been obliterated by the dust of the years.

  74-year-old Wang Ping is the first relic restoration artist in Ningxia. Since the 1970s, she began to "consult" more than 10,000 cultural relics, and then repaired them symptomatically. With a pair of Xinglin saints with the "rejuvenation technique", the cultural relics were revived.

  Wang Ping recalled that in April 1986, when the expansion project of Xinhua Department Store in Yinchuan City laid foundations, seven gilt bronze Buddha statues were discovered. After the Buddha statues were exposed to the air, the gold pieces began to fall off. At that time, as the only relic restorer in the Ningxia Museum, she was ordered to carry out rescue work on unearthed relics.

  Due to the limited restoration conditions of the Ningxia Museum, Wang Ping and a colleague brought the cultural relics to the Palace Museum. In order to improve the repair efficiency, she and her colleagues live and eat in the Palace Museum. After dozens of days of patient and meticulous work, Wang Ping and colleagues restored 7 Buddha statues, 5 of which were sent to Japan for exhibition.

  In 2006, these Buddha statues that had “lived” for 20 years in modern times ushered in the second “physical examination”. During the "Physical Examination", Wang Ping found that there were powdery rust and corrosion on the Buddha statue. It took her two months to complete the second restoration of 7 Buddha statues through rust removal, cleaning, corrosion inhibition, and protection. Today, seven gilt bronze bronze statues are permanently exhibited as national first-class cultural relics in the Ningxia Museum, "telling" tourists the splendid history of the Chinese nation.

  Li Jinzeng, director of the Ningxia Museum, said that in order to improve the ability to restore cultural relics and strengthen the professionalism in the restoration of cultural relics, the Ningxia Museum has established a cultural relics protection center, organic repair rooms such as silk fabrics, calligraphy and painting, wood products, inorganic repair rooms such as metalware and ceramics, and Material analysis and testing room.

  Walking into the restoration rooms of different types of cultural relics, it seems as if you are in a "hospital". The repairers are wearing uniform white coats, some are wearing gloves and dust masks and other protective equipment, and the desks are neatly arranged. Various "scalpels" for repairing cultural relics. Whether it is a mural covered with dust, a painted pottery jar with a dappled look, or a bronze appliance with an unrecognizable appearance, as long as these skilled craftsmen restore it, historical relics will regain their brilliance in their hands.

  In the laboratory, the reporter saw several young cultural relic restoration personnel burying their heads at their desks. Their eyes moved slightly with the scalpel at their fingertips, as if they were performing a precise "surgical operation."

  Ma Wenting is a "post-80s" graduate, majoring in chemistry, and has repaired cultural relics in the Ningxia Museum for nearly 10 years. According to her, the restoration of cultural relics is a combination of arts and sciences, which requires the use of science and technology as well as ingenuity. In her view, she and her colleagues are like relic doctors. Repairing a relic requires identifying the disease, finding the cause, and solving the disease. The cultural relics restoration department is also like a hospital. The "department" is clearly divided. There are paintings and calligraphy, porcelain and metal ...

  "Maybe some people think that the restoration of cultural relics is a lonely job, but I like to deal with these cultural relics. From their shapes, colors, and patterns, we can have a glimpse of the veins of ancient history." In the heart of Ma Wenting, restoring cultural relics It is to protect the history of this land, to leave a little more cultural heritage for future generations, so that more people can understand the path humans have traveled. (Finish)