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    Pair of Burmese Gilded Buddha Images of Solid Lacquer

    19th century

    height (of Buddhas only): 8.9 and 7.5cm, width: 5.1 and 4.6cm, depth: 3.4 and 3.8cm, combined weight: 67g (without stands)



    UK art market

    – scroll down to see further images –

    This fascinating pair of Buddha images is of moulded lacquer that has then been gilded. Being of solid lacquer, they are very light. They are not identical. The base of each has been moulded with what might be small disciple and animal figures.

    The images comprise only the outlines of the Buddha and as such appear based on the five small Buddha images at Phaung Daw Oo Temple on Inle Lake, in the Shan States of Burma. The Phaung Daw Oo images are 23-46centimtres tall, and have been so covered in gold leaf as acts of merit by devotees, that their original forms can no longer be seen.

    An 18-day temple festival is held each year during the Burmese month of Thadingyut (September to October). Four of the five images are placed on a royal barge shaped like a mythological hintha bird and taken out onto Inle Lake during the festival.

    The images here have been placed on old carved wooden, Chinese style stands. The stands themselves have a fine, yellowed patina.

    The two small images have a fine presence, and are in fine condition.


    Murphy, S. (ed.), Cities and Kings: Ancient Treasures from Myanmar, Asian Civilisations Museum, 2016.

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