Symbolism Of Color between China and Europe


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Symbolism of Color between China and Europe

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Symbolism Of Color between China and Europe

  1. 1. Symbolism of Colors between China and Europe Wong Hoi Tak, Jennifer (06009522) Cheung Sin Man, Andrea (07007140)
  2. 2. <ul><li>Color conveys meanings in two primary ways </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Natural associations (universal & timeless) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psychological symbolism (x universal) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cultural associations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Political and historical associations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Religious and mythical associations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Linguistic associations, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul>What does Culture have to do with Color?
  3. 3. <ul><li>China: </li></ul><ul><li>Supreme Power, Nobility </li></ul><ul><li>Splendor, Preciousness </li></ul><ul><li>Five elements of Yin Yang Theory ( 陰陽五行 ): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>stands for earth </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Concept of Five Dimensions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>symbolizes the center of the universe </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Exclusive color for the imperial family during Ming and Qing Dynasties. </li></ul><ul><li>Most common color in the Buddha School </li></ul>Yellow
  4. 4. Yellow <ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><li>Color of sunshine </li></ul><ul><li>Dual Symbolism: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Energy, Creativity, Optimism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jealousy, Cowardice, Illness </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Associated yellow with the clothes worn by Judas Iscariot ( 猶大 ) , one of the twelve original apostles of Jesus but betrayed Jesus into the hands of Roman authorities. </li></ul><ul><li> Negative symbolism (Eg. yellow-bellied ≈ cowardice) </li></ul>                                                                                                             
  5. 5. Purple <ul><li>China: </li></ul><ul><li>Elegance, Affluence </li></ul><ul><li>In traditional Chinese myth, the God of Heaven ( 天帝 ) is believed to live in the “ Purple Myrtle Palace ” ( 紫薇宮 ) </li></ul><ul><li>Tang Dynasty: used in the clothing of officials ranking above the “fifth class” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The prime minister was granted a &quot;gold seal with a purple silk ribbon.&quot;  symbol of the highest power next to that of the emperor . </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><li>Associated with Royalty since ancient Roman times </li></ul><ul><li>Power, Leadership, Success </li></ul><ul><li>Wisdom, Wealth, Respect </li></ul><ul><li>First used by the King of Phoenix(1600 B.C) </li></ul><ul><li>declared it to be the royal color (imperial purple) </li></ul><ul><li>Rarity of purple dye and was used to decorate statues of the gods </li></ul><ul><li> purple clothing was limited to Emperors only . </li></ul>Purple
  7. 7. <ul><li>China: </li></ul><ul><li>Taboo color, color of mourning. </li></ul><ul><li>Purity, Virginity </li></ul><ul><li>Death, Inauspicious </li></ul><ul><li>Stands for metal </li></ul><ul><li>Symbolizes the west & autumn </li></ul><ul><li>Traditional Chinese dislike autumn and white </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Eg. in Chinese Opera, characters with white masks represent insidious, treacherous </li></ul></ul>White
  8. 8. <ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><li>Color of Perfection </li></ul><ul><li>Truth, Purity and Peace </li></ul><ul><li>Associated with the clothes worn by Jesus in Christian paintings </li></ul><ul><li>In Christianity, white symbolizes joy, glory and the road to heaven </li></ul><ul><li>The color of newly baptized Christians as well as the Pope </li></ul>White
  9. 9. Black <ul><li>China: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Neutral </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Seriousness, Formality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Represents “ water ” in the five elements </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Western influence: black clothes are wore during funerals </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Black <ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Negative, Associated with death, Darkness and Bad Omen </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Black cat, Ravens = bad luck </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Black Death, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A symbol of mourning </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Red <ul><li>China: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Positive </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Symbol of “Fire ” and the South </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good Luck, Happiness , B oisterousness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>E.g. Weddings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Red envelopes (Lai See) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Colors theme of the Chinese New Year </li></ul></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Red <ul><li>Europe: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Connected with blood; represents strong emotions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Love, passion: red roses, Valentine ’ s day </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anger e.g. “ to see red ” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Danger: warnings, signs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Devil: Satan is often depicted with red skin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Political movement: communism/socialism </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Green <ul><li>China </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Wearing a green hat ( 戴綠帽 ) = infidelity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mixed with the color “Blue” ( 青 ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Represents “wood” in the 5 elements and “East” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lush greenery, represents Life and Growth </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Green <ul><li>Europe </li></ul><ul><li>Contradictory meanings </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Stands for devil in the mediaeval </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Envy, Sickness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Associated to the nature </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Environment protection e.g. Greenpeace, Die Gr ü nen (the Green Party in Germany) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Going green: to change to a more environment-friendly way of living </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Freshness </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>The interpretation of colors has changed across time, both in the East and West </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Chinese culture: 5 elements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Western culture: Greek philosophy/Christianity </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Western influence in Asian cultures </li></ul><ul><li>Some meanings stay the same throughout centuries. </li></ul>Conclusion