Jianchuan Wood-carving (剑川木雕) is a kind of woodcarving craftsmanship. It was originated in Jianchuan County(剑川县), Dali(大理). After absorbing the culture and production technology of the Han people and other nationalities, the Bai ethnic Minority gradually formed their unique and exquisite wood-carving skills.
Hometown of Wood-carving
Jianchuan County, which is known as The Yunnan’s Hometown of Wood-carving(木雕之乡). The wood-carvings from the Ming (1366-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties, such as architecture wood-carvings, ornamental wood-carvings, practical wood-carvings and souvenirs, were collected in Jianchuan County. They were the embodiment of the exquisite and long-standing skills of Jianchuan wood-carving.
The Jinachuan Wood Carvings technique began in the tenth century A.D. During the Ming and Qing dynasties, Jianchuan Wood-carving was popular in the now Sichuan(四川) and Guizhou(贵州). Jianchuan wood carvers were convened to Beijing for the construction of the Forbidden City(紫禁城). They were also sent to Southeast Asia for the construction of Buddhist buildings.
Contents of Jinachuan Wood-carvings
The contents of Jinachuan Wood-carvings are mainly composed of flowers and plants, animal and plant, as well as fairy legends and stories. Common ones are The Eight Immortals Crossing the Sea (八仙过海) and Eight Immortals Celebrating Their Longevity(八仙庆寿). The decoration of wood carving pattern is influenced by the traditional Chinese culture but it still has a strong inheritance of Bai culture in Dal. Especially the decorative patterns like lion and phoenix, which are popular among Bai people.