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Rare cliff carving Buddhist statues found in Tibet

Source:Xinhua 2023-04-13

This undated combo photo provided by the regional institute of cultural relics protection shows archaeologists conducting a survey at a cliff carving site in Markam County in the city of Qamdo, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region (L) and details of the site. (Xinhua)

LHASA, April 11 (Xinhua) -- Archaeologists in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region have found 10 Buddhist statues dating back to the period from the late 8th century to early 9th century, according to the regional institute of cultural relics protection.

These Buddhist statues with typical characteristics of the Tibetan Tubo Kingdom (about 618-842) were found in three cliff carving sites in Markam County in the city of Qamdo.

Trinley Tsering, a staffer with the institute, said that the cliff carving statues have their own unique elements, featuring rare subjects such as Sakyamuni Buddha and Manjusri Bodhisattva, the Buddha of Wisdom.

"These precious cliff carvings provide important information for further research on the spatial distribution, artistic inheritance, and ideological dissemination of Tubo Buddhist statues," said Trinley Tsering.

A special survey on grotto temples and cliff carving statues was launched in Tibet in December 2020. Statistics show that 277 sites of grottoes and cliff carving statues have been investigated in the region so far, of which seven are under national key cultural relics protection, and 23 are under regional-level cultural relics protection.

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