home> Nationalities in southwest China> Wa Nationality

The Cangyuan cliff painting.

Cangyuan cliff paintingThe Cangyuan cliff painting mainly spread over valleys of the Mengdonghe River, which is among the Ruliang Mountain, Bamboo Mountain and Gongnong Mountain in Congyuan county of Yunnan Province. It is one of the remains of ancient cliff painting art, which was discovered early in China. Since 1962, eleven painting spots have been discovered in Menglai, Dinglai, Mankan, Heping, Mangyang, Mengxing in the mid-northern Cangyuan County. Most of them were painted on pieces of vertical cliffs tens of meters above the earth.

The main content of the cliff painting are: human image, animal image, picture of village, pictures of hunting, offering sacrifice and dancing, etc. Every picture, simple and unsophisticated described vividly a picture of the primitive life with a central idea. It also reflects wisdom and rich imagination of the ancient Was.

Flat painting method was adopted in Cangyuan cliff painting, which is succinct in skill and expresses amorous feelings. Human's body is expressed by triangle without facial features, but the limbs were painted with changeable postures, which is full of strong feelings of action. Activities of human figure are shown through different postures of the limbs. Animals appear like that: though the facial features are vague, we can identify the species of them according to traits of horns, tails, feet and ears. 

Most of the paintings appear reddish brown. The pigment of the painting might be mixed of red iron ore, shellac and blood of animals. According to preliminary study and analysis of experts, these perhaps are works of the New Stone Age, which have had a history of more than 3000 years. The local Was worship it as a supernatural object all along.

An old resident of the Awa Mountain <<
Symbol of the Wa village---wooden drum >>