Cast Bronze Figure of a Warrior
height, including stand: 20cm
This very finely-cast bronze image of a Burmese warrior in traditional army costume is a splendid example of the casting that was still being undertaken in Burma in the early twentieth century.
This example shows a warrior with his
dha sword unsheafed and ready to strike. He wears shows with up-pointed toes, breaches, a splendid waistcoat, chains of office, and a traditional helmet with a spike finial. The image stands on a metal sheet which sits over the original wooden plinth.
Figurines such as these were commissioned by British administrators and their families in Burma as souvenirs and gifts for friends on their return home. As Sylvia Fraser Lu (1994) says, some examples barely rise above tourist kitsch but others such as those shown here, with their sense of proportion, realism and attention to detail are minor masterpieces of bronze casting.
This is one of the most intricate and finely cast statuettes of this type that we have seen.
UK art market
Fraser-Lu, S., Burmese Crafts: Past and Present, Oxford University Press, 1994.
Inventory no.: 1561