LOST KINGDOMS

LK_ExhibitionPage_022014-1

(Buddha from Central Thailand, first half of the 7th century, Sandstone, National Museum, Bangkok)

LOST KINGDOMS
HINDU-BUDDHIST SCULPTURE OF EARLY SOUTHEAST ASIA, 5th to 8th CENTURY
METROPOLITAN MUSEUM

April 14-July 27, 2014

I will never forget the first time I saw a Dvaravati Buddha in the  museum in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand, carved by highly skilled stone sculptors, related to Indian style, and with the Wheel of Law.

Now we have a chance to admire some 160 sculptures from museums in Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and Myanmar, as well as the Musée Guimet in Paris and some major museums in the United States, showing very early art from kingdoms mostly forgotten today  – Funan, Champa, Pyu, Zhenla, Kedah, Dvaravati and Srivijaya. With exception of Gandharan, Mathura, Gupta styles, these are the earliest Buddhist  sculptures  to encounter and they might help us understand  the cultural and political map of today’s Southeast Asia.

Cheers,

Elisabeth

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