Maijishan Grottoes is an important attraction in Maijishan scenic spot, national AAAAA class tourist scenic spot, and the Maijishan Grottoes is one of China's four big grottoes, which is known as the "Oriental sculpture gallery", the other three grottoes are: the Longmen Grottoes, Yungang grottoes and Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes.
The Maijishan Grottoes is a national key cultural relic’s protection unit; it is also the world famous art treasure. The Maijishan located about 35 km southeast of Tianshui city, Gansu province, and it one of Mountain of Qinling Mountains in the west of Xiaolong Mountain, with an elevation of 1742 meters, but the mountain is only 142 meters high from the ground. The shape of the mountain likes the wheat-rick, so people call it the Maiji Mountain which means wheat-rick in Chinese. Maijishan Grottoes is one of the cultural heritages claimed by the state administration as one part of “the Silk Road: the start and the Tianshan corridor network" on the world heritage committee in 2014.
Maijishan stone is sedimentary rock of puce, bumped up to the mountain peak, and it has many natural caves in the original. Its elevation is 1742 meters, the top of the mountain is 142 meters from the ground, the existing Buddhist grottoes are 194, clay sculpture and carved stone, stone clay sculpture are more than seven thousand two hundred, paintings are more than one thousand three hundred square meters, all grottoes carved in the cliff, distribution in the two cliffs of east and west.
East Cliff is existing 54 caves, West cliff existing 140 caves. Because the Maijishan Mountain is tertiary conglomerate, the structure of the stone is loose, and not easy to carve deliberate, so it is well known for its fine carved clay sculpture with most of the color clay sculpture. By sculptor Liu kaiqu hailed it as the "Oriental sculpture gallery”. About its digging period, most scholars believe that began in the later Qin dynasty, through the Northern Wei dynasty, the Western Wei dynasty, Sui dynasty, Tang dynasty and five dynasties, Song dynasty, Yuan dynasty, Ming and Qing dynasties were constantly digging and repairing. In the existing statues, the North dynasty statues in the original are in the majority.
The art of Maijishan Grottoes is known for its fine clay sculpture art at home and abroad. In thousands of the same size real sculpture, they are very vivid and interesting, what are regarded as treasures. Maijishan statues have two obvious characteristics: strong national consciousness and the secularization trend. In addition to the early works, from the beginning of the Northern Wei dynasty, almost all of the Buddha statues are bowed down according to the posture, with a pleasant countenance. It is Chinese God, but it carved like mundane people, became the personification of the people’s desire of happiness. Look from the size of the statue and dress, it gradually get rid of the influence of foreign art, reflects the characteristics of the Han nationality.
♦ Basic Information
► Open time: 8:00-17:00
► Site: Maiji Area, Tianshui City, Gansu Province