Tibetan Incense Workshop in Nyemo

Nyemo is a county in the west of Lhasa, lies on the north bank of the Yarlung Tsangpo River, the northern part of the Brahmaputra. Nyemo County, birth place of the Tibetan language, is renowned for its traditional handicraft, commonly known as "the three treasures of Nyemo" – Tibetan Paper, Engraving & Incense.

Nyemo Treasure: Tibetan Paper

Dated back to the middle of 7th century, Nyemo Tibetan paper is the unique cultural artifact of Tibet. During the past over 1,300 years, craftsmen of both Han and Tibetan ethnic groups tried to find the unique technical skills of making Tibetan paper with local raw materials, since paper making technology was introduced to Tibet by Princess Wencheng of China's Tang Dynasty (618-907 A.D.), when she came to marry Sontzen Gampo, king of Tubo Kingdom in ancient Tibet.

As one of the features of Tibetan paper produced in Nyemo, the writing would be still clear and legible even after being immersed in water. In May 2006, the traditional craftsmanship of Tibetan paper was inscribed as the first batch of the national-level intangible cultural heritage.

Nyemo Treasure: Tibetan Engraving

Tibetan engraving in Pusum Township, Nyemo County, is a traditional kind of handicraft passed down from generation to generation. Nowadays it has become an intangible cultural heritage of Tibet for better preservation and inheritance.

The engraving process is very intricate. A Tibetan Buddhist script, for instance, takes nine steps before it is finished, and a Buddha sculpture takes 15-16 or even 20-30 steps if it is more complex. and each craftsman owns more than 20 engraving tools exclusively used by himself.

In the recent years, Nyemo County invested 500,000 yuan in 50 family workshops, and allocated one million yuan in purchasing woodblocks and cloth, and set up training courses for the locals.

Engraving craftsmen combine the traditional folk craft with modern techniques, producing not only text sculptures, but also patterned sculptures used for printing scriptures, prayer flags and tourist products.

Nyemo Treasure: Tibetan Incense

With a unique harmless formula—adequate water supply, favorable climate and various plants, the Tibetan incense produced in Tomba Township, Nyemo County has a history of more than 1,000 years. Except for sacrificial ceremonies, this fragrant incense also can be used to prevent infectious diseases like flu and influenza, for its ingredients contain herbal medicines such as saffron, Sandalwood, Chinese Usnea and borneol.

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