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October 11, 2016

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Caves declared open for photographers

MORE than 100 photographers from China and overseas gathered at the Mogao Caves in northwest China’s Gansu Province yesterday to be allowed in to take pictures for the first time.

The Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand-Buddha Caves, are one of the largest and best-preserved sites of Buddhist art.

The Dunhuang Academy, the authority in charge of research, protection and management at the site, is sponsoring a six-day photographic event, in conjunction with the provincial literature and art circles federation, with the aim of demonstrating the art and historical richness of the caves.

Five caves dating to different historical periods will be open to photographers though the academy will retain the copyright of all photos, which will be reviewed and selected by experts with the results published on the official websites of the academy and the provincial photographers’ association.

Wang Xudong, the academy’s head, said: “Hopefully more people will understand the caves by photographing and joining the army that protects the precious cultural relics.”

The 1,600-year-old Mogao Caves feature a huge collection of Buddhist artworks — more than 2,000 sculptures and 45,000 square meters of frescoes in 735 caves carved along a cliff. It was China’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site, inscribed in 1987.


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