Lingxiao Treasure Hall can be regarded as the most representative large modernized temple. Although it is a RC architecture made of stainless steel and concrete. The elevated interior space, exquisite and sophisticated wood sculpture, and magnificent stone carvings in Guandu Temple are classic works of the new age as well as precious cultural assets for later generations. After 1993, in order to replace the molding works instilled with concrete, Guandu Temple invited famous sculptors to create works made of superb a thousand-year camphor and antrodia wood.
Besides the luxurious caissons, the wood sculptures in the altars are also amazing. The decoration of the altars in Lingxiao Treasure Hall is usually carved in one piece in coherent styles out of large wood in every part possible. The altar is just like a large work of exquisite wood sculpture. Visitors would be stunned by the delicacy, ingenuity, elegance, and magnificence of the works. Generally speaking, the key factors for folk arts or craftsmanship lie in process, construction methods, and materials. Carefully and meticulously, Guandu Temple is renovated by the best masters. The process, construction methods, and their skills are undoubtedly the best. However, the uniqueness of the materials also enhances the quality of the construction of Lingxiao Treasure Hall. The wood sculptures are made of precious a thousand-year camphor and antrodia wood. Camphor, in particular, because of its solid and hard texture, is applicable for traditional furniture and exquisite carvings. Although the hardness of the wood makes it more difficult for carving, because it is solid and elastic, it is great to adopt techniques of exquisite openwork carving and hollow carving for the presentation of multiple layers.
The wood sculptures in Lingxiao Treasure Hall are in the original wooden colors, in great contrast with the colorful and glamorous wood sculptures in Sanchuan Hall and Main Hall. Except for the ceiling caisson in front of the hall, all the carvings are not processed with ‘safe paint’. Instead, they are only protected with transparent wood paint. Therefore, these works are in the original wooden color. The preservation of the original color is influenced by the trends of folk art. However, the main reason is that because these works are made of precious a thousand-year camphor and antrodia wood, with beautiful natural textures. If they are covered with gold and colorful paint in conventional methods, even though the works might present colorful traditional works, it seems a waste of the precious materials. The preservation of the original wooden color manifests the rarity and preciousness of the materials. In addition, the works in single color demonstrate the beauty of elegance and simplicity.
The magnificence of the wood sculptures in Lingxiao Treasure Hall lies in the elevated 2-story space. To renovate the hall with wood sculpture as a whole in such a large space, they need not up top quality wood but also require wood in large volume. That’s why Lingxiao Treasure Hall looks so splendid. In addition, the whole space is decorated with exquisite and complicated wood sculptures in original wooden color, from the altar on the first floor and second floor to the intricate and luxurious ceiling caissons. Visitors would be in awe of the hard work of the masters and the temple.