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Temples of Gold: Seven Centuries of Thai Buddhist Paintings
     

Temples of Gold: Seven Centuries of Thai Buddhist Paintings

by Gilles Mermet (Photographer), Kenneth D. Whitehead (Translator), Sankti Leksukhum
 
The exuberant paintings found in the temples of Thailand enchant the eye and spirit with their vivid depictions of mythological and everyday scenes taken from ancient Buddhist texts. These little-known treasures, reproduced here in exquisite color, are masterpieces of visual storytelling that speak to us from across the centuries with joy, humor, and grace. Sankti

Overview

The exuberant paintings found in the temples of Thailand enchant the eye and spirit with their vivid depictions of mythological and everyday scenes taken from ancient Buddhist texts. These little-known treasures, reproduced here in exquisite color, are masterpieces of visual storytelling that speak to us from across the centuries with joy, humor, and grace. Sankti Leksukhum's text traces the complex history of these paintings, focusing on the fourteenth through the nineteenth centuries. He presents the essential Buddhist texts underlying the images, deepening our appreciation of these magnificent works of art, and examines the development of their distinctive style, from the arrival of Buddhism, to the overwhelming influence of the royal workshops of Bangkok, to the incorporation of Western techniques as Siam was opened to the West in the mid-nineteenth century. Golden Temples of Thailand will appeal to a wide audience, captivating art lovers with its superb reproductions, and art experts with its insightful text. The transformation of classic Buddhist texts into epic panoramas will enthrall students of Buddhism. The splendid colors, patterns, and inventive forms will inspire designers. And all those who want to revel in the exotic world of a rarely seen civilization will be fascinated. 120 color illustrations.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Even a confident lover of much Asian art may be surprised by the splendor and variety of the visual arts in Thailand. In Temples of Gold: Seven Centuries of Thai Buddhist Paintings, Bangkok art historian Santi Leksukhum (trans. by Kenneth Whitehead) demonstrates how Thai art evolved, what to look for in the paintings and how to see it; religious conventions, political events and several types of perspective are all explained. Photographer Gilles Mermet's (Mosaics of Roman Africa) 120 handsome, full-color images capture the splendors and oddities of Thai Buddhist murals, panels and architecture from sometimes-contorted, colorful battles and crowd scenes to elegant gold-and-black meditating Buddhas, surrounded by light or suspended amid the waves. ( Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
This handsome book brings us to the wall paintings of Buddhist temples in Thailand. Leksukhum (art history, Univ. of Silkadorn, Bangkok) explores the history of these paintings, commenting on the styles of the Sukhothai and Ayutthaya schools, which flourished in the 13th through the 18th centuries, as well as on the Rattanakosin schools of the 18th and 19th centuries. The work traces the sources of artistic inspiration from ancient Buddhist texts, including The Three Worlds, Ten Great Jatakas, and episodes in the life of the Buddha. The murals, captured by the French photographer Gilles Mermet (Mosaics of Roman Africa: Floor Mosaics from Tunisia, LJ 2/1/97), reveal the inherent contradictions and harmonies at work in these large-scale paintings. A fabulously illustrated feast for art lovers, students of Buddhism, and art historians, this is one of the few books in the last two decades to focus on Buddhist art in Thailand. Recommended for deep art collections in academic and public libraries. Lucia S. Chen, NYPL Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807614761
Publisher:
Braziller, George Inc.
Publication date:
01/01/2001
Edition description:
SLIPCASE
Pages:
263
Product dimensions:
10.94(w) x 13.40(h) x 1.24(d)

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