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All the videos described here have been produced by Elaine Koretsky, with photography by Sidney Koretsky. They are based on field expeditions that the couple undertook from 1976 to 2006. All of the videos are supplied in DVD format. The cost is $40 each video. Shipping within the U.S. is included. Outside the U.S., there is a charge of $3.00 for one video, and $1.00 for each additional video. Contact The Research Institute to order videos.

1. The Last Papermakers Along the Ancient Silk Road, 1993
2. Burmese Festival of Fire Balloons, 1995
3. Papermaking in Laos, 1995
4. Traditional Papermaking in Vietnam, 1987 & 2000
5. The Origin of Paper in China
6. Traditional Paper Sheet Formation Around the World, 1976-2002
7. Developments in Hand Papermaking Through the Centuries
8. Papermaking on the Roof of the World, 1978-2005
9. "Rice Paper" in Taiwan, 1987
10.  A Tribute to Dard Hunter
 

To see some short video clips click on the images below. Please disable your pop-up blocker as it will prevent you from accessing the video content. 

1. The Last Papermakers Along the Ancient Silk Road, 1993



 Elaine Koretsky traveled the ancient southern "Silk Road" from Xian west to Xinjiang Province, crossing the Great Gobi and Taklamakan Deserts, searching for vestiges of old papermaking in the oasis towns. She finally succeeded in finding traditional papermaking in Khotan, in the far northwestern part of China. The video vividly documents the papermaking of the Uygur people who inhabit this area.

19 minutes cost: $40.00 includes a full sample of Khotan paper and a printed text.

2. Burmese Festival of Fire Balloons, 1995



A spectacular depiction of 30-foot high handmade paper balloons filled with hot air, soaring into the Burmese night sky. In daytime, balloons of animals, birds and fish are launched, all in honor of the Buddha. The film also shows how the paper is made by hand, and how the balloons are produced.

42 minutes; includes a full sample of handmade paper and a printed text.
 

3. Papermaking in Laos, 1995



In a small village near Luang Prabang in northern Laos, Elaine located one family still making mulberry paper by hand. The video documents their complete process of papermaking, starting with scorching the mulberry branches to release the bark fiber from the woody core.

28 minutes
 

4. Traditional Papermaking in Vietnam, 1987 & 2000



This video was specially prepared for a presentation at a Vietnamese cultural exhibit sponsored by the Museum of Natural History in New York City. It shows the old papermaking of Les Villages du Papier in 1987, which Dard Hunter also documented years before, followed by the current papermaking in Hanoi City and the town of Dong Cao, where traditional Vietnamese paper is still produced by hand.

23 minutes; includes a sample of handmade paper.
 

5. The Origin of Paper in China



The documentary is an account of an expedition to China led by Elaine Koretsky. It describes a conference on "The Origins of Paper", where Chinese paper historians and archaeologists vehemently debated the subject of who was the inventor of paper. Elaine arranged for participation by non-Chinese members of the International Association of Paper Historians (IPH). The video includes the group's visits to five papermaking villages, plus some important historical and cultural points of interest.

40 minutes
 

6. Traditional Paper Sheet Formation Around the World, 1976-2002



This extraordinary film covers sheet formation as practiced in 30 locations around the world, illustrating the many variations in forming sheets using either the pouring or dipping methods of papermaking. All the papermakers shown represent unbroken traditions of papermaking, many going back in time hundreds of years, a few even to the origins of papermaking in China over 2,000 years ago. The scenes of sheet formation were selected from tremendous quantities of movie and video footage, the result of 38 field expeditions by Elaine and Sidney Koretsky, spanning more than a quarter of a century, in 43 countries around the world.

41 minutes; includes a printed text.
 

7. Developments in Hand Papermaking Through the Centuries



The video clips in this film show vividly some of the fascinating developments in traditional hand papermaking, starting with preparation of the raw material, then cooking, beating, sheet formation, pressing and drying. It begins in Bangkok at the simple workshop that Dard Hunter documented in 1935, and ends with processes that Elaine Koretsky recently witnessed in Asia, which make one wonder "what is truly handmade paper?"

29 minutes; includes a printed text
 

8. Papermaking on the Roof of the World, 1978-2005



The film is an account of traditional Tibetan/Buddhist papermaking in the Himalayas, notably Tibet, Nepal, Sikkim, Bhutan and China. From 1978 to 2005 Elaine Koretsky logged hundred of miles, traveling on bad roads and non-roads through the spectacular mountains of Asia. Despite the obstacles of landslides, bitterly cold weather, government restrictions and uncooperative guides, Elaine persevered, documenting papermaking in remote and barely accessible areas.

28 minutes; includes a printed text

9. "Rice Paper" in Taiwan, 1987



Elaine documents her adventures traveling through Taiwan seeking the makers of so-called "rice paper", a material that is neither made from rice, nor is it paper.

10 minutes; includes a sample of "rice paper" and a printed text.

10. A Tribute to Dard Hunter


Dard Hunter in Samoa

This film reviews Dard Hunter's four papermaking expeditions to see traditional papermaking in many countries of Asia, resulting in the publication of five remarkable books relating his adventures in these places. In this video are vivid scenes of Dard Hunter's experiences and Elaine's parallels when she explored the same places fifty years later.

30 minutes; includes a printed tex

Also available is "Handmade Paper in China, 1982-1999", a booklet of 34 samples of handmade paper collected and documented by Elaine Koretsky during her numerous expeditions to China. Size of samples averages 4" x 6". The accompanying text includes the fibers used and the villages where the papers were made. Cost: $40.00

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