After a hectic and busy Week 7 with accelerated workload and model making, Week 8 arrived seemingly out of nowhere. It has been two months, with 1 month left of this amazing journey in China, and what better way to appreciate and truly experience China, then to get our hands dirty and make some china! In our first week of July, some of us in our theme had the golden opportunity to escape Hangzhou’s modern lifestyle, into a whole other world of Jingdezhen (景德镇), a once bustling trading town with a history of 1700 years, known as the “Porcelain Capital” of China, and some might say, the World. 6 hours and 410 kilometers later, we landed ourselves in this rural town, filled our stomachs with delicious dinner and slept for the night in preparation for some clay-loving the next day. Energized and ready to go the next morning, we were gathered in this meeting room, which will serve as our classroom the next few days. In the following days, we fell into a routine. Masters in the craft will shape formless clay into vases, blank canvas into amazing pieces of art, all while making it look easy.
When it reached our turn, we fumbled, tripped and fell. It was hard work, requiring intense concentration and lots, and lots, and lots of patience. It was only through this hands-on experience, that I came to appreciate and admire how much care and consideration goes into every vase. We came back from this trip, each one of us with our own unique experience, but a collective appreciation of the china of China.