Arts in Southeast Asia
The mural paintings show a combination of traditional and modern painting techniques as follows: the traditional painting techniques are demonstrated through the main characters’ dresses are similar to those in the Masked dance drama, they are showing the same dance movements, and the characters’ adornments are gilded. The modern painting techniques include the use of horizon lines and perspective, imitation of real buildings such as palaces in the Grand Palace, and depiction of real landscapes. In addition, the paintings also show ways of life of people in the Thai Royal Court and ordinary Thai people and humor through the supporting characters. There are 178 painting panels in total; and each painting comes with verse of Ramayana poetry on the lower part of the panels, 224 verses in total.
Phra Sri Rattanachedi is a bell-shaped stupa in circular plan. Its four niches which have doors leading to the inner chamber, where the relics are kept in the small golden stupa, have smaller bell-shaped stupa on the top. The stupa is on a set of pyramidal lotus-shaped pedestals with wires in round plan. Its Ballang is in square plan, surrounded by supporting pillars.
The sculpture is in the damaged condition. Only the head and upper body in ‘Tribhanga’ posture (standing body position or stance used in the traditional Indian sculpture, art and Indian classical dance forms) are left. The lower part of body is lost.The face is plump and well-crafted. The eyelids are half closed. The Unalome is visible at the forehead while head wears the triangle crown with jewelries. The hair bun on the top of the head is broken and lost, only the hair that is down to the shoulders left. The body wears many accessories such as the leather body bracelet with the chamois head on the left shoulder. This body bracelet is overlapped by a pearl body bracelet. Two necklaces, the top one is of pearls and the lower one is jewelries with flowers decorated. The jewels bracelet is also visible. Overall, this sculpture reflects the relationship between the Network of Mahayana Buddhist Kingdoms such as Pala Dynasty of India and Shailendra Dynasty of Java. However, the study by Assoc Prof Chet Tingsanchali points out the traits of the sculpture that do not exist in Java Art which means this sculpture might be crafted in Thailand.
Prasat Phra Thep Bidorn is a four-portico building with Prang top. The front projecting portico is in the east. The wall is decorated by tiles in Phoom Khao Bindh pattern on blue background. The cornice is decorated with Chorfah, Bairaka, Naksadung and Hanghong. A prang is on the top of the building, which is made from plaster and decorated with coloured tiles. Its four pediments display the royal coats of arms. The northern portico’s pediment displays Unalom of King Rama I. The southern portico’s pediment displays Garuda holding Nagas of King Rama II. The western portico’s pediment displays Phra Viman of King Rama III and the eastern portico’s pediment displays Phra Makamongkut of King Rama IV. The windows and doorways has Mongkut tops which are coated with gold lacquer and glass, while the sided walls show the royal coats of arms of King Rama I – V.
Chedi Phukhao Thong is a monumental architecture. It comprises a pyramidal ambulatory platform with a staircase projecting from the middle of all four sides and a 12-angle indented (recessed) body. The upper part of the chedi, which now tilted slightly, is composed of Buddha niches on four sides, triple rings moulding, anindented bell-shaped dome and a spire.
Phra ubosot is in projecting cross plan and faces the east The easterm portico is extended, while the duplicated Phra Phuttha Jinaraj is installed in the western wing. The northern and southern porticos are linked to the cloister that leads to the back of the building.The front edge of the boundary stand concrete pillars with lotus-bud-shaped echinus, which signify “Sema”, while the back of the ubosot shows through Dharmacakra Sema on a granite-carved floor tiles. The boundary floor uses pink and gray granite tiles, while the wall is a white marble.The eastern and western porticos have four marble pillars in circular plan. Beside the staircase of each side stand a pair of marble-carved lions, which Prince Naris designed and molded by Khun Sakolpradit, the royal artisan.The exterior door was embossed with Dvarapala, while the interior door was painted the same figure with golden lacquer. The windows use the same technic, however, with Mara Baek. The niches were decorated by stained glass.The roof was built in traditional Thai form with yellow corrugated tiles and Thepphanom at the eaves, which once were the roof tiles of Wat Kalayanamite that later had been coloured in China. The pediment of phra ubosot displays the important state coat of arms. The eastern portico’s pediment displays Vishnu riding Garuda which stands for Phra Krooth Pah emblem. The western portico’s pediment display Unalom in Bussabok which stands for Maha Unalom or Maha Ongkarn emblem. The northern portico’s pediment displays three-headed elephant carrying bussabok which stands for Aiyarapot emblem. The southern portico’s pediment displays Cakra which stands for Cakraroth or Dharmacakra emblem.
Phra Ubosot Wat Phra Sri Rattanasatsadaram is a traditional Thai brick-and-stucco architecture in rectangular plan with boundary and faces the east.The three-tiered wooden roof is decorated by blue roof tiles, with orange and yellow roof tiles at the edge line. The cornice is decorated with Chorfah, Bairaka, Naksadung and Hanghong. The floral-carved-wooden pediment is coated with gold lacquer and glass, whose centre displays Vishnu riding Garuda.The exterior wall is decorated with gold-lacquer-and-glass Phoom Khao Bindh pattern, while there are Garuda holding Naga sculptures around the pedestal. Three doorways can be found both in the front and the back, with three pairs of bronze lion figures at the front staircase. There are pillars in dodecagonal plan surrounding the ubosot in the veranda area. Its echinus is a lotus shape and brackets are supporting the eaves.
The 12 sculptures are made of stucco with colorful glazed porcelain adornments according to Rammakian including different types of crowns, blouses, costumes, pointed sandals, etc. Their bodies were also painted according to the literary work.6 pairs of Yakṣas are as follows: 1.Suriyaphop – Intharachit 2.Mangkonkan – Wirunhok 3.Thotsakhichanthon – Thotsakhiriwan 4.Chakrawat – Atsakanmarasun 5.Thotsakan - Sahatsadecha Maiyarap - Wirunchambang
The Southeast Asian-styled mosques are different from Indian or Persian masjids. The mosque has a square plan with 4 pillars supporting the sloping roof with the wooden beam supporting the tile roof without any dome. Other interesting point is the minaret that has stacked body with the Chinese sloping roof at the top. The shape of the minaret is similar to Chinese pagoda. At the same time, the minaret is also look alike the Dargarh type tower in Nagapattinam in South India
Dutch Colonization Period
17th – 18th century
This is a castle shape chedi. It has one layer flat base in a square plan, one layer lotus base. Next up is a reunthat, decorated with stucco and various patterns in a square plan on a lotus base with arches. The top has a sloping roof. Next up was another three layers lotus base supporting the bell, spire, minaret and tiered umbrella in a circular plan.
This is a bell shape chei. The bottom base is the lotus base in the square plan. Next up is a three-layer flat base set, lotus base, three layers flat base in a circular plan, bell supporting base, the bell and throne in a circular plan, cylinders, spire, prominent minaret, lotus petals on the floor of minaret and seven layers tiered umbrella. It also has a line of walls with bai sema shape backrests, East West and North arches with Buddha images.
This chedi is a single pointed top castle shaped chedi. The bottom base is in a square plan. It supports a four layers flat base in the twenty eight corner plan, two layers lotus base in the twenty eight corner plan, reunthat with four standing Buddha images arches in the twenty eight corner plan, three layers twelve corners lotus base, the bell and throne in circular plan, spire and minaret.
This chedi is a surrounding elephant chedi. The base at the bottom has traces of an elephant decoration surrounded by half-body elephants on all four sides. Next up is a lotus base decorated with five arches on each side, for a total of twenty arches, a bell in a circular plan with various patterns decorated, square throne, and the spire that the upper part had been broken.
This is a castle shape chedi. It has a flat base and lotus base in the many corners plan support, a base that supporting the reunthat, four arches with Buddha images and decorative pattern on the pillars. Next up was the reun yod that was made into a layer house with walls, windows, castle model at the corners and sloping roof but the top part was missing.
This chedi is a bell shape chedi. It has square base with thirty-six corners. At the very bottom next to the floor appears the top edge of the balcony backboard. Next up is the three layers main base in the square plan, adding more angles which is a lotus base at the second and third floor. The corner is decorated with stupicas on the first and second floor and purnaghata(abundance pot) on the third floor. Next up is a two layers invers lotus base in an octagonal plan, three layers flat circular base, the bell, short cone shape spire and long minaret.
It is a votive tablet that looks like a triangle shape. In the middle is a Buddha image Sheltered by a Naga. The right side is believed to be Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva and the left side is Prachya Paramita. There is a curved frame surrounds the three sculptures and it is supported by a lotus base.