An image of Phan waen pah

Unknown Artist

Phan waen pah

Location
Upper Asian gallery
Further information

The skill and dedication required to make fine lacquer objects such as this had a natural parallel in Buddhist devotions. For this reason the utensils, furniture and fittings that adorned the more important and wealthy Buddhist temples were usually flamboyant objects that glittered with subtle reflections of mother-of-pearl. Elaborate trays like this were used in Buddhist ceremonies by the monks, who would place their robes on the upper pedestal before an image of the Buddha. A classic and uniquely Thai form, this receptacle is decorated with seated 'thepanom' - minor Buddhist deities - and floral-inspired ornamental motifs that echo the Buddhist decorative style. Thailand is renowned for its distinctive 'hoi fai', or flaming mother-of-pearl, made from the shell of the turbo snail that is indigenous to the Gulf of Thailand.

Art Gallery Handbook, 1999. pg. 300.

Place of origin
Thailand
Period
Thailand: Rama III Period 1824–1851
Year
1824-1851
Media
Lacquerware
Medium
black lacquer with mother-of-pearl inlay
Dimensions
38.0 x 33.0 cm
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Credit
Purchased 1993
Accession number
523.1993.a-b