BACK    

THE CULTURAL RESEARCH ROCK ART IN CHINA  

                                             Su Sheng

  Rock art are fixed on the cliffs on which recorded the history of civilization  from ancient times. How to realize and decipher the rock art is an important question in front of us. The key point is to and master the rules of primitive artistic creation which is controlled by primeval thoughts witchcraft conception, and to understand the relations and characteristics of the images, symbols and pictographs in the rock art. Then to analyze and reorganize these complicated graphs skillfully and reasonable in order to make them understandable. This will help us to reveal the cultural mystery deeply hidden in the rock art .

  The graphs on the rock art are always the symbols the ancient people used to show something, it is our duty to understand the real meaning of these symbols.

  Owl is the symbol of the 18th constellation, one of the 28 constellation into which the celestial sphere was divided in ancient Chinese astronomy consisting of 7 stars in Pleiades. The symbol of life also the symbol of the Sun and Spring. The owl in the rock art on the General cliff in Lianyun guang was always simplified in the graph . The symbol of the 18th constellation, the owl appeared, it was the arrival of the winter Solstice in 24 solar terms, marking the return of the sun and all thing on earth sprouting. This is the theme of the rock art in Lianyunguang.

  In the rock art in Altay, Xingjiang Autonomous Region, the bow and arrow are signs of sex and sex act. It showed their ancestors yearned for multiplying.

  In the rock art Baichahe, Inner Mongolia, the maní»s face shows the theme of í░the sky and earth mate with each other, then all things on earth sproutingí▒. The maní»s face is the symbol of reproduction.

  The maní»s face on the rock art in Helanshan has the same meaning with that of Baichahe in Inner Mongolia.

  In the group rock art in Hutubi Xingjiang Autonomous Region, man and wolf were boldly and ingeniously combined together. The nose of a man was put together with the sexual organ of a male wolf. It showed not only the special relations between wolf and maní»s face, but also the interrelations of the nose and maní»s sexual organ which were outstanding reflects the theme of reproduction worship. The fairy tale of wolf as the human ancestor was widely spread in this area.

  The rock art of birds and fishes discovered in Helanshan inherited the cultural tradition of bird symbolizing the male and fish symbolizing the female. By which it is implied the thought that man and woman mating means race multiplying.

  The rock art of the god of frog in Helanshan showed the scene of the wizard resorting to magic arts to pray to the God of Frog. For mercy, these rock art are the typical works of their ancestors praying for rain and birth.1

íí