ThailandVisual and performing arts samith senadeera
Introduction• Thai traditional arts have numerous distinctive qualities which make them easily distinguishable from those of other neighboring countries in South- East Asia.• Thai art mainly deals with Buddhist religion and is known as Buddhist art, which formed the national ideal and conception of life.• In ancient times up to the early modern period in Thailand, Thai craftsmen were considered the "true artists". They were thought to possess superior intellect, a full understanding of culture and a wide ranging wisdom.• At present the contemporary art scene in Thailand is centered around its capital – Bangkok
Manual Arts Architecture• Thai architectural style is unique and very memorable.• Traditional Thai architecture is the result of a combination of many different styles, methods and influences from the cultures of Burma, China, Khmer, India and Sri Lanka.• Most noticeable in Thai architecture are the swooping multi- tiered rooflines, the distinctly ornamental decorations, the stunning interior murals, the vivid colors and the lovingly crafted and gold-adorned Buddha images.There are 3 main categories : Religious Architecture Traditional Architecture Royal Architecture
1.Religious Architecture• Essentially, there are five different historical periods where significant changes can be seen in the various religious architecture styles. Khmer (9th to 13th Century) Sukhothai (Mid 13th to 15th Centuries) Ayutthaya (Mid 14th to late 18th Centuries) Lanna (Mid 13th to 19th Centuries) Rattanakosin (Late 18th Century to present)• Regardless of historical period, the most important area of religious architecture is the Thai temple or wat.
2.Traditional Architecture• The traditional Thai house is well adapted to the tropical climate• The main materials used, such as hardwoods, bamboo and dried leaves assist in keeping the house cool.• It is thought that the overall design also reflects spiritual beliefs. The bedroom, or the innermost area of the house used as the sleeping quarters, is believed to be frequented by family ancestors.• Nowadays the traditional Thai house is mostly found in rural settings or up-country and the majority are the more modest versions.
3.Royal Architecture• Appropriately named royal architecture relates mainly to royal palaces, royal mansions and other royal residential and non-residential working buildings, as well as royal wats known as Wat Luang.• Teak wood is the main structural material of such buildings, giving them their distinctive rich red color. The doors and windows usually have ornate pediments and frames, which are sometimes decorated in gilt bronze.
Crafts• The Thai phrase "chang sip mu“ is used to describe a craftsman in Thailand• With sklls that are passed down for generations, the art of Thai crafts has long been a reflection of Thai peoples creativity and ingenuity.• The intricate detail and meticulous methods is a display of inventiveness, and the elaborate designs proof of perseverance.• Moreover, the abundance of natural materials such as wicker, palm leaves, rattan and coconuts make it possible for Thais to produce beautiful and inexpensive handicrafts.
Drawing• Traditional Thai paintings showed subjects in two dimensions without perspective.• The size of each element in the picture reflected its degree of importance.• The most frequent narrative subjects for paintings were or are: the Jataka stories, episodes from the life of the Buddha, the Buddhist heavens and hells, and scenes of daily life.• Traditional Thai art can be seen in museums and temples, palaces and theaters, or in the living culture and day-to-day activities of the Thai people themselves
Wood Carving• Wood carving is a form of working wood by means of a cutting tool held in the hand (this may be a power tool), resulting in a wooden figure or figurine (this may be abstract in nature) or in the sculptural ornamentation of a wooden object.• Mostly, teak has been used for carving as, unlike nowadays, it used to grow in abundance in Thailand.• Wood-carving is done in two styles • bas-relief • free-standing
Fruit carving• In Thailand, fruit carving is a traditional and highly cultivated art.• The decoration of food and correct use of serving dishes is of utmost importance in Royal Thai Cuisine. Thus no account of Thai food can be complete without mention of the importance given to food and meal presentation.• The ingenuity of all Thai palace crafts and cooking lies in the artists attempt to create natural and realistic masterpieces.
Sculpting• Thai sculptors of the past concentrated almost exclusively on Buddha images, producing works that rank among the worlds greatest expressions of Buddhist art.• Thai sculpture received a boost in 1933 when an Italian sculptor, Corado Feroci founded the Fine Arts School which in 1943 became Silpakorn University.
Lacquering• Lacquering is the art of coating things like leaves of doors and windows in black lacquer and gilding them with gold leaf.• Examples of this craft technique are book cabinets holding Buddhist scriptures and door leaves of many Buddhist temples.• Lacquer, or rak in Thai, is the resin of a plant in the same family as the cashew nut. This resin is irritating and can cause a severe rash on the skin. Consequently, some people who are allergic to it will not be able to do the job. The process of lacquering is complicated and painstaking. It usually takes up to three or four months to complete such a work of art
Molding• Molding also known as coving (UK, Australia) is a strip of material with various profiles used to cover transitions between surfaces or for decoration.• It is traditionally made from solid milled wood or plaster but may be made from plastic or reformed wood.• In classical architecture and sculpture, the moulding is often carved in marble or other stones.
Plastering• Plasterwork refers to construction or ornamentation done with plaster, such as a layer of plaster on an interior wall or plaster decorative moldings on ceilings or walls. This is also sometimes called pargeting. The process of creating plasterwork, called plastering, has been used in building construction for centuries.
Thai Modern Art• Thai modern art started around 1924, when Corrado Feroci, an Italian sculptor was invited to Thailand by King Rama VI ( 1910-1925).• He produced bronze statues of the exploits of Thailand’s past heroes.• Thai painters began experimenting with Impressionism and Cubism to a lesser extent. Thai painters chose nature themes or depicted rural scenes, usually devoid of people. Angkarn Kalayanapongsa, Misiem Yipintsoi and Tawan Duchanee led Thai modern art into different forms of art than seen in Thailand to that time.
Music• The Thai people have always had a passion for music and song since music is closely related to the life and work of the people• Traditional Thai music is quite unique and cannot be found anywhere else in the world.• Its exotic and wondrous sounds captivate and sometimes confound the listener. Not unlike western sounds, Thai music has several styles representative of different regions of the country.• Thailands musical styles include Thai classical music, folk songs and local or regional music.
Dance• The Thai Dance is a graceful and interpretative performance.• It has played an indispensable part of Thai life from historical times to the present day.• Thai dance is closely intertwined with the beliefs, traditions and customs.• It has been kept alive through royal patronage in a continuous line of succession through the Sukhothai, Ayutthaya and Rattanakosin periods.• Thai dance may be divided into two major styles: folk dance (rabam phun muang) and classical dance (natasin).• Each of the four regions of Thailand has its own folk dances• northern dances- elegant ,graceful .• South and Northeast- active and fun-filled,• Central and eastern- linked to the agrarian lifestyles