Dazu Rock Carvings- Part I

Temples of Asia | | August 21, 2009 at 10:04 am




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dazu rock carvings beishanA portrayal of utter brilliance, the Dazu Rock Carvings are a cluster of Buddhist statuettes engraved in the stone precipices in Dazu, the Szechuan province of China. Though they span comparatively smaller areas when measured up to the ones at Datong, Luoyang and Dunhuang, they espouse the highest standards of quality, status of conservation and the widest assortment of themes and styling.

With more than fifty thousand sculptures in vivid colours and varying sizes, they enlighten one about the spiritual, ethical and chronological narratives of that period. Viewable in innate lighting, the rock statuettes are linked by pathways and courses. The two key sites are those of the Bei Shan situated close to the Dazu town and the Baoding Shan located sixteen kilometres to the north-east side.

dazu rock carvings beishanThe Bei Shan carvings that commenced in 892 AD under the control of Governor Wei Junjing during his posting are the most primordial works of art found at . The rather dilapidated state and formal finishing makes a fascinating contrast to the vastly vivacious art forms found in Baoding Shan. They span more than 250 alcoves in two sets and are guarded by a canopy. Dazu

The primal first set portrays numerous military sections inclusive of the full-size Wei Junjing donning body armour. Nestled away in the first alcove alongside the entry is the sculpture build by an overpowered Shu noble warrior.

The twelfth century dated second set spans above the five hundred meters long projection largely attributing the depiction of the Deity of Clemency, the Kwanyin, escorted by priests, parsons and the benefactors that sponsored the development of the project.

Dazu Rock CarvingsIn the 130th alcove, the Deity of Clemency, Kwanyin dons atypical, formidable tantric form clutching weaponry and a decapitated head held in her several hands. In the adjoining alcove, she is noticed in a rather archetypal peaceable appearance, gaping at the lunar appearance. In the 136th alcove, lies a close to five metres towering prayer wheel that portrays the Realm of Buddha. The Buddhist trine is encased by cloud formations of immortal maitreyas, with depictions of the divine palace on top and worldly drudgery beneath.

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3 Comments

  1. Winnie says:

    What do you think about a tour combining all the spiritual places? Awesome! Ricky, your article is really inspiring! A kinda spiritual tour….. What say?

  2. Roger says:

    It’s quite a tricky question, anyways, can anybody suggest some places to visit along with Dazu…….
    Something in same theme…..
    What I liked best about your ar

  3. Roger says:

    It’s quite a tricky question, anyways, can anybody suggest some places to visit along with Dazu…….
    Something in same theme…..
    What I liked best aboutway I your article is that it simple & interesting, just the like….

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