Chongqing- "Grottoes are weathering. The information they carry is disappearing with time. That makes me distressed," said Li Fangyin from the Academy of Dazu Rock Carvings. "In 1999, when we published the Collected Inscriptions of Dazu Rock Carvings, we realized that it was time to carry out archaeological research on the cultural heritage site."
"In the beginning, we detected and mapped the statues ourselves. We objectively and correctly recorded the appearance and details of the statues," said Li Fangyin. "We were not allowed to make any changes to preserve the site for future research. The error of the mapping drawings for a 2m*2m cave must be controlled within 1 cm or 0.5 cm." The memory was fresh in every researcher’s mind. As they said, they learned from practice.
In 2018, the Complete Works of the Dazu Rock Carvings was published. It is of great weight, both physically and academically. Over time, its value will be highlighted.
Fourteen years of surveying, mapping, and compiling 11 books, 19 volumes and 12 million characters, 5,794 photos, and 2,983 line drawings all culminated with achieving all the archaeologists’ goals, solving problem after problem, until they have succeeded at last.
"We compared photos of statues before and after the restoration. It turned out the measures we used to protect the cultural heritage were useful." Archaeologists from the Academy of Dazu Rock Carvings want to share Dazu Rock Carvings with the world and make more people aware of them.
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