Chefoo?, China: [Self-help Dept., Women's Bible School, Presbyterian Mission?], ca. 1930. This unusual book is done in the style of the "Temple Hill Cut-Outs" done in Chefoo China by the students at the Ai Dao Bible School. The intricately cut silhouettes are cut from black paper and depict a variety of images that extend across the double spread of pages. The first spread illustrated with a small child holding a bird, and with lines of verse in English concerning friendship. The book was not used as a guest book - indeed, one wonders iif ti would have survived in such perfect condition if it was used as such.
Other scenes include: farmers plowing a field with a pair of oxen; a landscape with man on donkey crossing over a bridge; a rice field with the various stages of harvest under way; a child fishing in a pond with an onlooker seated on the bank; a landscape with travelers, one carried in a sedan chair, the other in a rickshaw; landscape with flowers and birds; landscape with fisherman and junk; landscape with monk and child lighting a lantern; and landscape with vendors returning from market including seller carrying caged birds.
The American Presbyterian Mission Report of the Chefoo Station for the Year ending June 30, 1939 describes this delicate art being undertaken by students at the Ai Dao Bible School: " Travel being so difficult because of cold weather and torn-up roads, the winter vacation was shortened to two weeks. Although the students rested from studies, they worked hard all day making cut-outs to earn money for the coming term".
Oblong 4to. 10 x 9 1/2". 9 double spreads, plus cut outs at title page and last page, a total of 20 leaves. Original string bound brocade cloth covers in tan with black cloud pattern and circular dragon motif. Small damp stain at upper corner front cover. Internally, some offsetting at cut outs, closed cracks at rear end paper. The cut outs in splendid condition. Very good overall. Item #24361