Elizabeth Briel, Travel Artist

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Smash Your Name on the Dotted Line


Testing square signatures on Thai paper

A friend ordered chops for me from the back streets of Hong Kong Island: two solid stones with my Chinese name hand-carved in antique characters.

He texted me just as I was about to board a plane in Chengdu: ?Are you sure you want that pasty red ink stuff for your chops? Or would you rather just have a regular stamp pad?? he asked.

The previous day I?d seen a Chinese painter mash his chop into the red paste, warm it up to a buttery red froth, then smash his signature onto a piece of smooth mulberry paper. It had more integrity than a signed name could ever possess. His combination of strength and control was irresistable. I had to try it.

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