Teach Through Educational Travel: Yungang Grottoes
Can you imagine 51,000 statues of Buddha? They range from 2 centimeters high to 17 meters tall! The tall one is in Grotto #5, also known as Big Buddha’s Cave. Inside each grotto, every surface is carved (or carved and painted). Watch this video to get a sense of the scale of the grottoes. Have you ever been in a place of art dedicated to one theme? What was it like?
The art influences of these grottoes include Persian, Byzantine, Greek, and Indian. Explore the grottoes through these interactive photos – choose a grotto (#V is awesome), head inside, and use your mouse to look around. Which grottoes were you drawn to? Do you think most visitors prefer the large statues, or the small ones? If you were there, what would you try to see first?
Read this description of a visit to the Yungang grottoes. How do you think people are affecting the statues? What about development – traffic, pollution, and the effects of the mining nearby? Brainstorm actions that environmentalists can take to preserve the art and the grottoes.