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A stunning catalog of an exceptional collection of rare Burmese silver.
What is the best way to understand Burmese silver? Many publications focus on names, dates, places, and stories that identify the who, when, where, and what. Southeast Asian art specialist Alexandra Green argues, however, that too few pieces provide reliable information about silversmiths, production locations, and dates to allow for a comprehensive understanding of the subject. Instead, Green’s close examination of silver patterns reveals strong links with Burmese art history, connections with contemporary artistic trends, and participation within the wider world of silversmithing reaching as far back as the Bagan period in the eleventh to thirteenth centuries.
Many studies of Burmese silver have been plagued by a lack of understanding of the Burmese context. In contrast, Green examines silver from a local perspective, drawing on Burmese texts and information that allows for a nuanced view of the motifs, designs, and patterns that appear repetitively on silver pieces. Accompanied by detailed photographs and explanatory texts, this groundbreaking volume proposes a new way of looking at Burmese silver.
About the Author
Alexandra Green is a specialist in Southeast Asian art with a focus on Myanmar (Burma). She has published and edited several volumes on Burmese art, including Burma: Art and Archaeology, Eclectic Collecting: Art from Burma in the Denison Museum, and Buddhist Visual Cultures, Rhetoric, and Narrative in Late Burmese Wall Paintings.
"Writhing over the surface of the 120 objects catalogued here—from bowls to belt buckles, scabbards to [centerpieces]—is a riot of abstract pattern and vegetation, mystic beasts and scenes from the Buddhist Jatakas. Fortunately, the erudite Alexandra Green, steeped in the narrative and art-historical currents of the region, is on hand to parse the torrent of symbolism."
— World of Interiors