Temple murals fulfilled the two-role function of decorating the space and educating those who came to worship by depicting Buddhist stories with moral messages. Lanna murals are almost always found in the temple.
Lanna murals are characterized by their spontaneity, downto-earth descriptiveness and strong local flavor. An intriguing mix of Burmese, Shan, Lao, Thai Lu and Siamese influences, these murals reflect the multi-ethnic makeup of the north and it is this blending of outside influences with local traditions and sensibilities that gives them their distinctive charm.
This month until February 28th, 2018 Tamarind Village is showcasing a very special exhibition about the beauty and messages behind mural paintings in Northern temples. The unique and quiet hotel features pictures of mural paintings along with details and history in English. Most of the mural paintings pictures exhibited are from Chiang Mai and Nan. In addition to discovering the cultural diversity of Northern Thailand, one can learn a great deal about the everyday lives of Lanna people in the past through these murals as they depict everything from courtship rituals
Unlike the formal style of painting one finds in Bangkok temples, where local artists followed carefully prescribed formulas approved by the court, Lanna murals are very individual in approach, with each temple’s murals boasting
their own unique characteristics. Regional styles can also be detected from province to province.
Many murals that could be viewed 20 years ago are now gone, and along with them, a part of northern Thailand’s precious cultural heritage. Thankfully growing awareness and interest in them has meant that efforts to restore and preserve important mural sites have been undertaken in recent years. Tamarind Village’s Team hopes that this exhibition will help increase interest further and, in some small way, guarantee the safe keeping of these ‘windows’
onto Lanna’s past.
The exhibition, “Traces of a Lost Kingdom: Cultures & Customs in Northern Thai Temple Mural Paintings” is open daily from 9:00-20:00 in Tamarind’s gallery corridor. It continues on the second floor of the hotel’s restaurant, “Ruen
Tamarind” with a very interesting reproduction of temple and many well written details in English. Entry is free of charge and Tamarind Village is the perfect place to relax and enjoy a coffee, admiring the surrounding Lanna style architecture.
TAMARIND VILLAGE CHIANG MAI :
50/1 Rajdamnoen Road, Sriphoom, Chiang Mai.
Tel. 053-418 896