Located in Baisha Township, 8km north of the seat of the Lijiang Naxi Nationality Autonomous County, there are 53 fresco groups located in the hall. These mural paintings, with their fine and smooth lines, bright colors,vivid pattern and balanced and harmonious composition are a wonderful sight. These frescoes are only crucial to the history of Chinese painting, but are important cultural heritage relics too.
Another name for Lijiang Murals is Baisha Murals. Baisha (White Sand) is located in the north of Lijiang. It is named this because of the large amount of white sand on the earth’s surface there. According to history Baisha is the earliest place for the settlement of Naxi nationality after they entered Lijiang basin. The present murals are all kept in Dabaoji Palace and Liuli Temple in Baisha. All of the 55 murals were masterpieces in the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644). The biggest one is stored in Dabaoji Palace. In total, there are 100 vivid figures visible in it. Their facial expressions are vivid enough to show their happiness, anger, sadness and joys. All of the Baisha murals are about religion. However their uniqueness comes from the fact that they are the combination of Buddhism, Taoism and Lamaism, which is quite a rare phenomenon.
The frescoes at Dunhuang are a vivid reflection of the Buddhist culture existing in this area at the time of their creation. This site also provides a fascinating insight into Tibetan Buddhism, Han Buddhism and Taoism.The originality and figures of the mural paintings reflect the different religious cultures and artistic forms of Buddhism, Lamaism, Daoism and the
Naxi Dongba religion, as developed in a Naxi school. Therefore, Lijiang Mural is quite different from other frescos. Each painting includes at least one hundred portraits, but perspective is used very well, and the close, middle and establishing images are clear. The various lifelike portraits are not only Buddhas but also ordinary people such as bureaucrats, criminals, tourists and executioners. Many of the scenes and subject matters are drawn from daily life-people are shown fishing, riding horses, weaving, dancing and casting iron. The painters used different methods of portrayal within the different elements of the fresco, such as flesh, garments, jewelry, weapons and many other components. The style of these true-life frescos is rural and unconstrained; the colors are strong and have intense contrast but are also unified. The Lijiang Mural fully demonstrates the superb artistic skills, outstanding creativity and rich imaginations of these excellent craftsmen. The vivid and exact figures, flowing lines, well-defined colors and powerful effects of the exquisite details make the Lijiang Mural not only the rare treasure of art, but also forceful proof of national solidarity and an important source of information for research on national religions, arts and history.
Lijiang Murals attract countless people both at home and abroad because of it distinctive characteristics and precious historical connotation.