Peking (Beijing) Opera masks originates from totem in ancient times, develops into facial paintings of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, and eventually takes the shape of facial costume of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. It is a pattern of put-on facial make-up for opera actors and actresses in the stereotype roles of "painted face" and clown. It plays the artistic functions of implying commendatory and derogatory connotations and differentiating benevolence and malevolence, enabling the audience to get a glimpse of the inner world of actors and actresses through their symbolic facial make-up. In this sense, facial make-up has obtained the reputation as "painting of heart and soul". Today Beijing Opera masks have gradually become a fashionable element in Chinese daily life. The following images from Xinhua Agency give you a glimpse on this.
More information on Beijing Opera masks
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