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Symbolism Of Color between China and Europe

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Symbolism of Color between China and Europe

Symbolism of Color between China and Europe


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  • 1. Symbolism of Colors between China and Europe Wong Hoi Tak, Jennifer (06009522) Cheung Sin Man, Andrea (07007140)
  • 2.
    • Color conveys meanings in two primary ways
      • Natural associations (universal & timeless)
      • Psychological symbolism (x universal)
        • Cultural associations
        • Political and historical associations
        • Religious and mythical associations
        • Linguistic associations, etc.
    What does Culture have to do with Color?
  • 3.
    • China:
    • Supreme Power, Nobility
    • Splendor, Preciousness
    • Five elements of Yin Yang Theory ( 陰陽五行 ):
      • stands for earth
    • Concept of Five Dimensions:
      • symbolizes the center of the universe
    • Exclusive color for the imperial family during Ming and Qing Dynasties.
    • Most common color in the Buddha School
    Yellow
  • 4. Yellow
    • Europe:
    • Color of sunshine
    • Dual Symbolism:
      • Energy, Creativity, Optimism
      • Jealousy, Cowardice, Illness
    • 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.
    •  Negative symbolism (Eg. yellow-bellied ≈ cowardice)
                                                                                                                 
  • 5. Purple
    • China:
    • Elegance, Affluence
    • In traditional Chinese myth, the God of Heaven ( 天帝 ) is believed to live in the “ Purple Myrtle Palace ” ( 紫薇宮 )
    • Tang Dynasty: used in the clothing of officials ranking above the “fifth class”
      • The prime minister was granted a "gold seal with a purple silk ribbon."  symbol of the highest power next to that of the emperor .
  • 6.
    • Europe:
    • Associated with Royalty since ancient Roman times
    • Power, Leadership, Success
    • Wisdom, Wealth, Respect
    • First used by the King of Phoenix(1600 B.C)
    • declared it to be the royal color (imperial purple)
    • Rarity of purple dye and was used to decorate statues of the gods
    •  purple clothing was limited to Emperors only .
    Purple
  • 7.
    • China:
    • Taboo color, color of mourning.
    • Purity, Virginity
    • Death, Inauspicious
    • Stands for metal
    • Symbolizes the west & autumn
    • Traditional Chinese dislike autumn and white
      • Eg. in Chinese Opera, characters with white masks represent insidious, treacherous
    White
  • 8.
    • Europe:
    • Color of Perfection
    • Truth, Purity and Peace
    • Associated with the clothes worn by Jesus in Christian paintings
    • In Christianity, white symbolizes joy, glory and the road to heaven
    • The color of newly baptized Christians as well as the Pope
    White
  • 9. Black
    • China:
      • Neutral
        • Seriousness, Formality
        • Represents “ water ” in the five elements
      • Western influence: black clothes are wore during funerals
  • 10. Black
    • Europe:
      • Negative, Associated with death, Darkness and Bad Omen
        • Black cat, Ravens = bad luck
        • Black Death, etc.
      • A symbol of mourning
  • 11. Red
    • China:
      • Positive
      • Symbol of “Fire ” and the South
      • Good Luck, Happiness , B oisterousness
        • E.g. Weddings
        • Red envelopes (Lai See)
        • Colors theme of the Chinese New Year
  • 12. Red
    • Europe:
      • Connected with blood; represents strong emotions
      • Love, passion: red roses, Valentine ’ s day
      • Anger e.g. “ to see red ”
      • Danger: warnings, signs
      • The Devil: Satan is often depicted with red skin
      • Political movement: communism/socialism
  • 13. Green
    • China
      • Wearing a green hat ( 戴綠帽 ) = infidelity
      • Mixed with the color “Blue” ( 青 )
      • Represents “wood” in the 5 elements and “East”
      • Lush greenery, represents Life and Growth
  • 14. Green
    • Europe
    • Contradictory meanings
      • Stands for devil in the mediaeval
      • Envy, Sickness
      • Associated to the nature
        • Environment protection e.g. Greenpeace, Die Gr ü nen (the Green Party in Germany)
        • Going green: to change to a more environment-friendly way of living
      • Freshness
  • 15.
    • The interpretation of colors has changed across time, both in the East and West
      • Chinese culture: 5 elements
      • Western culture: Greek philosophy/Christianity
    • Western influence in Asian cultures
    • Some meanings stay the same throughout centuries.
    Conclusion
  • 16.