Documentary film: Lacquer in Asia

Lacquer in Asia: from technique to art

Author : Momoko Seto
Areas of Research : East Asia

Lacquer in Asia: DVD

Lacquer in Asia: DVD

Contact the document author

A table of lacquered products (including the table itself)
A table of lacquered products (including the table itself)

Coproducer: CNRS-Images
Head of production: Jean-François Sabouret
Director: Momoko Seto

Produced: 2010
Duration: 52 minutes
Languages: English, French, Japanese

Based on the original idea of: Tran Huy Quang

Shell used to collect lacquer
Shell used to collect lacquer

For the first time, this film tells the story of the great adventure of lacquer, the distinguished technique that has existed in Asia for over 9,000 years. From lacquer trees to synthetic lacquer, Japanese Wajima bowls to mass-produced furniture in China, and polished lacquer paintings in Vietnam, craftsmen, artists and researchers illustrate the different faces of these objects which have become works of art.

This documentary can be ordred from CNRS Images.

Master Nguyen Gia Tri

A polished lacquer painting by Nguyen Gia Tri

This documentary was produced with the support of:
L’Association d’Amitié franco-vietnamienne, Montpellier
L’Association des Beaux-Arts de Hanoi,
CNRS office, Beijing
“Directions Production”, Japan

Lacquered bowls from Wajima
Lacquered bowls from Wajima

“Lacquer in Asia”The content of this document was sourced from Réseau Asie‘s web site: ‘http://www.reseau-asie.com/’ – Copyright © 2011 – Réseau Asie

Lacquer in Asia: DVD

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Artist : Jean Dunand : biography

Jean Dunand in his workshop, 1918. Courtesy of Paris Originals. Source: http://onasecretmission.blogspot.com

part of Jean Dunand's work : photo by Daniel E. Shaw

 
part of Jean Dunand’s work : photo by Daniel E. Shaw
These Lacquered screen are Urushi works with gold leaf, eggshell and mother of pearl
Crushed eggshell Table of Jean Dunand

Crushed eggshell Table of Jean Dunand@David Haffman


Jean DUNAND, biography

Biography of Jean DUNAND (software translate from French Source)

Jean DUNAND
(1877-1942)

May 20, 1877, at the Petit Lancy (Switzerland) Jean Dunand was a student of the school of Geneva Industrial Arts which he graduated in 1896. in 1897 a travel grant him is attributed; He comes to Paris and in the workshop of the sculptor, artisan Dampt. Jean Dunand shows a bust at the international exhibition of 1900. In 1904 he partially abandoned the sculpture for the metal working and that same year, the Musée des Arts Décoratifs buys him a pushed copper vase. He exhibited regularly at the Nationale des Beaux Arts and fall, shows which he is shareholder of the artists Decorators will be Vice President. From 1921 to 1929 he participates with Jouve, Goulden and Schmied, at the Georges Petit Gallery, exhibition of the group they founded and personally, in all major exhibitions in France and abroad.
As early as 1912, early trade with the Japanese artist Sougawara who introduced him to the artisan work of lacquers. Jean Dunand soon organized a specialized workshop where he employs a large number of practitioners and Indo-Chinese artists. Jean Dunand is conceived and executed important sets decorative or movable while lacquer, particularly large lacquer gilded and carved the “Normandy”, for the France and abroad, and, at the same time, continues to work the metal: vasestrays, objects and helmet of honor offered by the Americans to Marechal Foch, swords of academics…

Jean Dunand, who was committed to the war of 1914 and had been nationalised French, Chevalier of the Legion of honour to military title in 1919, officer in 1926, died June 7, 1942.
The work of Jean Dunand appears first such a magnificent rehabilitation of handicraft work. From 1896 to 1904, he exhibited his sculptures, but in the last year for the first time it has decorative parts metal worked in the hammer. Therefore, it will experience all techniques, all metals: copper, steel, nickel, Tin, lead that it will enrich gold and silver inlaid with lacquer, enamel or learned and valuable patinas. It uses traditional techniques but magnifies them by alloying, unexpected and always hand accustomed to the volumes and the harmonious seats of the carved work seek pure forms; When the set designer will intervene, it will invent a linear ornamental language geometric rhythms.
This passionate researcher who had had the audacity to cover sometimes lacquer metal, wanted to know the secrets of the techniques of the far East, thus combine Chinese traditional science and the decorative invention of an artist in the West. He then made his own the slow and difficult work of lacquer including preparation, requires not less than 20 successive operations; but of this science he knew him enrich his contributions: so since there is no white lacquer, it imagina to incorporate the natural resin of the shells of eggs of hens, canes or Partridge in delicate colours of ivory, pale green or brown. Source of new sets from which come the possibility of achieving lacquer portraits to the faces of women clear…
In all the work of jean Dunand, design plastic, decorative artist is served by a tireless artisan consciousness: constant and perfect union of mind and hand.

images Source: Facebook Page about Jean Dunand (www.facebook.com/pages/Jean-DUNAND/96935184608)



Japanese Buddhist Statue Conservator

images from NHK TV program

Conservator use Urushi mix with sawdust and ???powder for mixture glue.

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Book: Studies in Conservation-The Conservation of a Burmese Dry Lacquer statue of Buddha

Studies in Conservation © 1994 International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works

Vol. 39, No. 3, Aug., 1994

Abstract

This paper describes the reconstruction of a fragmented, larger than life-size (1430mm tall) dry lacquer statue in the collection of the Department of Oriental Antiquities, British Museum (registration number 1880.3463). Some of the problems encountered and their solution are discussed. /// Ce papier décrit la reconstruction d’une statue laquée à sec qui se présentait en plusieurs fragments, plus grande que nature (1430mm de haut) et provenant de la collection du département des Antiquités Orientales du British Museum (no 1880.3463). On discute quelques-uns des problèmes rencontrés et leurs solutions. /// Die Arbeit beschreibt die Rekonstruktion einer fragmentarischen, überlebensgroßen (1,43m hohen) Lackstatue in der Orientabteilung des British Museum in London. Einige der dabei aufgetretenen Probleme und deren Lösung werden erörtert.

Source: http://www.jstor.org


Book: Lacquer :Technology and Conservation: A Comprehensive Guide to the Technology and Conservation of Asian and European Lacquer

  writer :Marianne Webb

ISBN 10: 0750644125 / 0-7506-4412-5
ISBN 13: 9780750644129
Publisher: Butterworth-Heinemann
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
In a general sense, lacquer is a clear or coloured coating, that dries by solvent evaporation and often a curing process as well that produces a hard, durable finish, in any sheen level from ultra matte to high gloss and that can be further polished as required. Despite the similarities in their names, Shellac and lacquer are not the same, and are not related. Shellac is an insect resin secreted by the Lac bug, which lives in India and Southeast Asia. Shellac’s solvent is alcohol. Lacquer is based on cellulose nitrate (nitrocellulose) with resins added to make it less brittle, and nitrocellulose is made from wood pulp. Lacquer’s solvent is lacquer thinner. [1] While both lacquer and shellac are traditional finishes, lacquer is more durable than shellac.
Contents
* 1 Urushiol-based lacquers
* 2 Nitrocellulose lacquers
* 3 Acrylic lacquers
* 4 Water-based lacquers
* 5 Japanning
* 6 See also
* 7 References
Synopsis:
For the conservator this book is an invaluable tool when examining the options available for treatment of lacquer. Not only does it cover the technology and methods of treatment for both types of lacquer, but it assesses current practices enabling the conservator to make more More…
informed decisions.Controversial issues are also debated, such as whether Asian lacquer should be restored in the Asian manner, using non-reversible materials, or using western methods that are theoretically reversible. As the book describes production technology and decorative techniques it will also be a useful aid for both art historians and collectors alike in identifying and dating lacquerware.

For the conservator this book is an invaluable tool when examining the options available for treatment. Not only does it cover the technology and methods of treatment for both types of lacquer, but it assesses current practices enabling the conservator to make more informed decisions. Controversial issues are discussed such as whether Asian lacquer should be restored in the Asian manner, using non-reversible materials, or using western methods that are theoretically reversible. As the book describes production technology and decorative techniques it will also prove to be a useful aid for both art historians and collectors alike in identifying and dating lacquerware.

Lacquer has long been misunderstood, particularly because the word itself has been used to characterize many different materials. For centuries the term has been used to refer to the Asian and the European materials. At present it is used to describe any glossy coating, from cellulose nitrate to modern plastic finishes.



What’s Lacquer?

Lacquer

From Wikipedia

A round red lacquerware box depicting carved scenes of children playing, from the reign of the Qianlong Emperor (1735–1796), Qing Dynasty of China.

In a general sense, lacquer is a clear or coloured varnish that dries by solvent evaporation and often a curing process as well that produces a hard, durable finish, in any sheen level from ultra matte to high gloss and that can be further polished as required.

The term lacquer originates from the Portuguese word for lac, a type of resin excreted from certain insects.[1] Regardless, in modern usage, lac-based varnishes are referred to as shellac, while lacquer refers to other polymers dissolved in volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as nitrocellulose, and later acrylic compounds dissolved in lacquer thinner, a mixture of several solvents typically containing butyl acetate and xylene or toluene.

While both lacquer and shellac are traditional finishes, lacquer is more durable than shellac.

Contents

[hide]

[edit] Etymology

The French word lacre “a kind of sealing wax”, from Portuguese lacre, unexplained variant of lacca “resinous substance”, from Arabic lakk, from Persian lak, the verb lac meaning “to cover or coat with laqueur”.[2] The root of the word is the Sanskrit word laksha (लक्ष) meaning “one hundred thousand”, which was used for both the Lac insect (because of their enormous number) and the scarlet resinous secretion it produces that was used as lacquer in ancient India and neighboring areas.[3][4] Lac resin was once imported in sizeable quantity into Europe from India along with Eastern woods.[5][6] The modern Hindi-Urdu word lakh (लाख, لاکھ), meaning “hundred thousand,” is also derived from the same Sanskrit root-word.[3]

[edit] Urushiol-based lacquers

A Chinese six-pointed tray, red lacquer over wood, from the Song Dynasty (960–1279), 12th-13th century, Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Ming Dynasty Chinese lacquerware container, dated 16th century.

According to Encyclopædia Britannica, varnish resin derived from a tree indigenous to China, species Toxicodendron vernicifluum (formerly Rhus vernicifluum), commonly known as the varnish tree. The manufacturing process was introduced into Japan and remained secret for centuries.[7] These lacquers produce very hard, durable finishes that are both beautiful and very resistant to damage by water, acid, alkali or abrasion. The active ingredient of the resin is urushiol, a mixture of various phenols suspended in water, plus a few proteins.

Wooden lacquer-finished whistles made in Channapatna, Karnataka, India

Urushiol-based lacquers differ from most others, being slow-drying, water-based, and set by oxidation and polymerization, rather than by evaporation alone. In order for it to set properly it requires humidity and warm temperature. The phenols oxidize and polymerize under the action of an enzyme laccase, yielding a substrate that, upon proper evaporation of its water content, is hard. Lacquer skills became very highly developed in India and Asia, and many highly decorated pieces were produced. The process of lacquer application in India is different from that which is followed in China and Japan. There are two types of lacquer: one obtained from the T. Vernicifluum tree and the other from an insect. In India the insect lac was once used from which a red dye was first extracted, later what was left of the insect was a grease that was used for lacquering objects. The fresh resin from the T. vernicifluum trees causes urushiol-induced contact dermatitis and great care is required in its use. The Chinese treated the allergic reaction with shell-fish.

The contemporary theory held that from China, knowledge of lacquer technology was introduced to Korea, and from there to Japan. It was believed that Japan had also been using lacquer from ancient times, but the systematic process of application was developed by the Chinese. With the discovery of lacquer ware in Japan dating back to Jōmon period, conflicting theories claim that technology may have been independently developed in Japan. Trade of lacquer objects traveled through various routes to the Middle East. Known applications of lacquer in China included coffins, plates, music instruments and furniture. Lacquer mixed with powdered cinnabar is used to produce the traditional red lacquerware from China.

The trees must be at least 10 years old before cutting to bleed the resin. It sets by a process called “aqua-polymerization”, absorbing oxygen to set; placing in a humid environment (called “furo” or “muro” in Japanese, meaning “a bath” or “a room”) allows it to absorb more oxygen from the evaporation of the water.

Lacquer-yielding trees in Thailand, Vietnam, Burma and Taiwan, called Thitsi, are slightly different; they do not contain urushiol, but similar substances called “laccol” or “thitsiol”. The end result is similar but softer than the Chinese or Japanese lacquer. Unlike Japanese and Chinese Toxicodendron verniciflua resin, Burmese lacquer does not cause allergic reactions; it sets slower, and is painted by craftsmen’s hands without using brushes.

Raw lacquer can be “coloured” by the addition of small amounts of iron oxides, giving red or black depending on the oxide. There is some evidence that its use is even older than 8,000 years from archeological digs in China. Later, pigments were added to make colours. It is used not only as a finish, but mixed with ground fired and unfired clays applied to a mould with layers of hemp cloth, it can produce objects without need for another core like wood. The process is called “kanshitsu” in Japan. Advanced decorative techniques using additional materials such as gold and silver powders and flakes (“makie”) were refined to very high standards in Japan also after having been introduced from China. In the lacquering of the Chinese musical instrument, the guqin, the lacquer is mixed with deer horn powder (or ceramic powder) to give it more strength so it can stand up to the fingering.

A Chinese lacquer coffin decorated with birds and dragons, from the State of Chu, 4th century BC.

There are more than four forms of urushiol which is written as thus:

Urushiol.png R = (CH2)14CH3 or
R = (CH2)7CH=CH(CH2)5CH3 or
R = (CH2)7CH=CHCH2CH=CH(CH2)2CH3 or
R = (CH2)7CH=CHCH2CH=CHCH=CHCH3 or
R = (CH2)7CH=CHCH2CH=CHCH2CH=CH2 and others.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lacquer


What’s “Japanning”?

Japanning Just as China is a common name for Chinese ceramic,

Japan is an old name for Japanese Lacquerware[*] (made from the sap of the Lacquer Tree) and its European imitations. As Asian and Indian lacquer work became popular in England, France, the Netherlands, and Spain in the 17th century the Europeans developed imitations that were effectively a different technique of lacquering. The European technique, which is used on furniture and other objects, uses varnishes that have a resin base similar to shellac. The technique, which became known as japanning, involves applying several coats of varnish which are each heat-dried and polished. In the 18th Century this type of lacquering gained a large popular following.

*^ Niimura, Noriyasu; Miyakoshi, Tetsuo (2003) Characterization of Natural Resin Films and Identification of Ancient Coating . J. Mass Spectrom. Soc. Jpn. 51, 440. JOI:JST.JSTAGE/massspec/51.439

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lacquer


Urushi Art : mix Japanese craftmanship into Lacquer painting of Vietnam

         Nhat Tran talked about Urushi and “Urushi Art” as her background in Vietnamese lacquer painting artist.

2 in 1 …Put the skill of Japanese craftmanship into Lacquer painting of Vietnam

Source : http://www.urushi-artist.com

A. Origin

  • The oldest lacquer artifacts found so far in Japanese tombs are 6,000 years old, while in Vietnamese tombs archaeologists have found many lacquered objects dating back to the fourth century B.C.
  • Urushi (the Japanese name for lacquer) is a viscous fluid organic material that comes from the milky sap of several varieties of an Asian tree belonging to the Anacardiacea family. Nearly all Southeast Asian countries have a variety of their own: in Japan, it is the Rhus vernicifera; in Cambodia, it is the Rhus Malanorrhea. Vietnam, too, has its own varieties, the most reputed being the Rhus Succedanea. Urushi should not be confused with industrial synthetic coatings that are used to impart a high gloss to surfaces.

B. Physical and technical characteristics

  • After the sap has been tapped, it is boiled, skimmed, and filtered through a hempen cloth to remove impurities. It is then stored in wooden barrels for several weeks and graded according to the age of the tree, the season it was collected, and the depth at which it separated after maturation.
  • Urushi is a medium with remarkable qualities. It is highly resilient and durable thanks to its biochemical properties (how its enzymes react both with oxygen and with proteins in order for urushi to cure and harden). Before painting begins, the support (plywood or polystyrene) is primed with ten layers of lacquer mixed with very fine clay.
  • As a result, it becomes very resistant, water-proof, insect-proof, and mold-proof, and the support is prevented from cracking, bending, or warping under fluctuations of temperature or humidity. Urushi also has strong adhesive properties: any material added to it binds with it permanently. In addition, it provides a rich array of esthetic effects of textures, dimensions, layers, colors, light, and shine.
  • Urushi products can last hundreds of years while retaining their glossiness, smoothness and elegance. Their colors do not fade with the impact of light and time, and amazingly, as the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting deeper and become more luminous.
  • Artists mix urushi with color pigments and various natural dyes. Other embedding materials can be used, such as eggshell, mother-of-pearl, plant fibers, sand, and gold and silver leaf.

  

C. The Process of making urushi paintings

Making an urushi painting is a long and demanding process. It may take several months, depending on the specific technique of the artist, the number of urushi layers that are applied, and atmospheric conditions that are favorable enough for the lacquer to cure.

  1. Priming
  • Good priming is a long and arduous process, but essential to ensure long-term durability. Before urushi painting can begin, the support needs to be primed with ten coats of lacquer. Each coat must completely cover the support: front, back, and sides. Each of these coats needs to cure completely and then be sanded before the next one is applied.
  • The support is first painted with persimmon tannin to seal the surface and facilitate absorption, and then sanded. A first layer of raw urushi is applied and then sanded after it has dried.

 

  •  Thin sheets of hemp cloth are soaked in raw urushi and attached to cover tightly all sides of the support. A new layer of raw urushi is applied and then sanded after curing.
  • Subsequently, a foundation layer of urushi is applied mixed with ground clay. Four more such coats mixed with a decreasing ratio of ground clay and an increasing ratio of pulverized clay stone are then applied. Two more layers of raw urushi are applied to finalize the priming.
  • Once fully cured, the support is sanded and polished. When fully primed, the support is pitch black, perfectly smooth, and permanently protected against decay or damage caused by water, acids, heat, insects, and mold.
2.   Painting and Wet Sanding
  • If a particular design is needed, it is first drawn with a chalk on the fully-primed support.
  • The artist will then start to pile on layer after layer of a higher grade of urushi mixed with different colors (at least five coats in average, often much more, with curing and sanding taking place between each).
  • Mixing the dry pigment with urushi is time-consuming because both must be stirred together thoroughly and then filtered.
  • On some layers the artist applies extremely thin leaves of silver or gold to create background effects of light. Tiny pieces of crushed eggshell may be embedded with tweezers, one fragment at a time, wherever white color or a mosaic effect is needed.
     
Once no more additional layers or materials need to be applied, and once the work has again completely cured, the extremely delicate task of “painting by wet sanding” begins. This is an artistically risky and crucial step, for upon it depends the final external appearance of each painted panel. Using very finely grained sand paper (of a grade ranging from 400 to 2,000) and a constant flow of water on the surface, the artist begins “digging” into the layers, moving carefully her hand inch by inch, taking at every moment the decision to continue or stop sanding according to what pattern develops all around and to the textural effects she is determined to achieve. The artist must remember in what layer a particular color has been applied and must be careful not to sand too hard or too quickly to avoid passing through the desired layer and thus spoiling the painting. Specific color nuances can only be achieved by carefully sanding the interface between a given pair of layers.
  
3. Polishing and Finishing

The last stage is the polishing of the work, which takes the following steps.
  • First, the entire surface is wet-sanded with a very fine grain of paper and cleaned with clear water.
  • Then the same process is repeated with san-jet (an abrasive powder).
  • Using a piece of fine silk wrapped around a cotton ball, a very thin layer of a finishing urushi of the highest grade is applied in round motion, throwing away the silk as soon as it gets dark. The work is then put inside a muro (urushi-curing chamber) to let it cure.
  • After sanding, five layers of the clearest kind of urushi are applied to serve as a clear-coat protector.
  • Finally, the entire surface of the work is polished by rubbing it first with either a soft cloth or the bare palm of the artist’s hands until adequate depth of appearance and a wonderful sheen is obtained.

D. Care

  • The surface of clear lacquer is protective and durable. The only maintenance the artwork needs is dusting with a light soft feather duster or a soft dry cloth. If necessary, urushi paintings can be cleaned with almost anything that is not abrasive or harsh. Fingerprints can be removed by rubbing with a soft damp cloth and the surface needs to be dried immediately with a soft dry towel. A mild soap or alcohol can be used to remove stickier dirt. Rinse well with clear water and dry immediately with a soft paper towel.
  • No polishing or varnishing product should be applied to the paintings. If desired, one can easily polish the painting again with the palm of the hand to make it cleaner and shinier.

Artist: Nhat Tran

Nhat Tran, a Vietnamese immigrant, utilizes the 6000-year-old Japanese process of urushi (lacquer) painting. Through non-traditional usage of urushi techniques, she achieves stunning visual effects unobtainable in other media.

“Urushi is a viscous organic sap that is tapped from several species of Asian trees,” said Tran. “It is a highly resilient and durable medium that is impervious to water, heat, mold, and insects; it has very strong adhesive properties and polymerizes when curing; and it provides a full array of gorgeous effects of textures, depths, layers, colors, light, and shine. As the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting richer and more intense.”

    Tran’s work contains up to 40 layers of lacquer, often embellished with exotic materials and precious metallic powders and foils between layers. Her sense of esthetic embraces the Asian soul. The result is elegant, understated, complex, and deserving of lengthy observation and contemplation.

Tran’s works are in numerous public and private collections, including the Renwick Gallery, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Indianapolis Airport Authority, and Indiana State Museum.

Nhat Tran express who she’s and about her works in her website http://www.urushi-artist.com

Trained as an oil painter since my youth, I have specialized over the last ten years (since 1998) in a magnificent medium that remains unusual in the United States despite its potential, namely Asian lacquer or urushi (after its Japanese name). Urushi is an art that reflects the esthetic sensibility of the Asian soul. Its mysterious beauty and universal appeal has always fascinated me, and thus urushi has become my primary medium of artistic expression.

Urushi is a viscous organic sap that is tapped from several species of Asian trees. It is a highly resilient and durable medium that is impervious to water, heat, mold, and insects; it has very strong adhesive properties and polymerizes when curing; and it provides a full array of gorgeous effects of textures, depths, layers, colors, light, and shine. As the years go by and the pieces age, their colors keep getting richer and more intense.

My non-traditional use of urushi has led me to discover how well it adapts to the demands of contemporary art. Lacquer painting produces visual effects that I cannot obtain with other media. I have produced a large number of two- and three-dimensional abstract paintings, usually on wood, but also on extruded polystyrene and fiberglass.

"Wing" The Indianapolis Airport Authority: commissioning of a large urushi lacquer mural

Education

•  2010             Guest Researcher, Urushi Section in the Department of Crafts, Tokyo University of the Arts (Geidai), Tokyo, Japan (April–July)

•  1987–1992   Bachelor of Fine Arts, University of Fine Arts, in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Graduation with highest distinction

•  1978–1983   School of Art, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


Experience

•  2009       Panelist for the Indiana Arts Commission (visual arts)

•  2003–present Teaching Artist, VSA arts of Indiana (VSAI), Indianapolis

•  2001       Associate Instructor, Herron School of Art, Indiana University, Indianapolis

Source : http://www.urushi-artist.com


The Lacquer Pavilion is visual highlight of the Museum and an extraordinary example of Thai art.

The Suan Pakkad Lacquer Pavilion

  • The Lacquer Pavilion is visual highlight of the Museum and an extraordinary example of Thai art, positioned at the edge of the garden.
  • The structure is more than 200 years old and it formerly stood in the precincts of a temple. The late Prince Chumbhot purchased the building and moved it to these grounds, then had it restored. The pavilion consists of a room within a room. A narrow corridor winds all the way around an inner room.
  •    The walls of the corridor are decorated in richly carved gilded wood. The interior of the inner room is decorated entirely in gold and black lacquer. The effect is stunning. The technique of lacquering in blak and gold was known in China for thousands of years but introduced to Thailand in the Ayutthaya period. The work portrays a uniform black background with details of the Life of Buddha on the the upper panels and scenes from the Ramakien on the lower portions.
  • As this building is a reconstruction of an earlier Ho Trai at Wat Bang Kling in Ayutthaya Province not all the aspects of traditional depictions are present now.
  • The paintings depict various events from the life of Buddha, along with others from the Hindu epic, Ramayara. There are also the numerous scenes from daily Thai life, as well as some showing early foreign visitors to Ayutthaya. These foreigners are depicted in the uniforms of the period of Louis XIV. In 1687 French troops were despatched to Siam to protect King Narai from English and Dutch forces.
  •     

Source: http://www.thailandsworld.com


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