Bai jiama from Shangguan

David LeffmanUncategorized Leave a Comment

In 2018 I visited Zhang Ruilong (张瑞龙), a sixth-generation carver of Bai minority jiama woodblock prints, at his studio out in the countryside near Shangguan, north of Dali old town in Yunnan. This is probably the last area in all China to use jiama prints on a daily basis as part of their Buddhist, Daoist and local Benzhu folk religious …

Lockets, locks and longevity

David LeffmanUncategorized Leave a Comment

In 2018 I bought this antique child’s locket (鎖片) in Dali, an old walled caravan town in China’s Yunnan province. Today Dali has become a bohemian holiday retreat for China’s urban middle class, but from the seventh to the thirteenth centuries served as the capital of the Nanzhao and Dali kingdoms, whose borders reached from Tibet to Thailand, and at …