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Secular Evidence in the Visual Art of Bagan
- The monumental architecture and plastic arts of Bagan are directly related to the religious dedications. Within three or four centuries, the style and significance of Bagan visual art works was gradually progressed, compromising between indigenous and exotic ways of craftsmanship. The first phase of Bagan art work can be correlated with Pala style and the traces of Indic art and architecture. The second phase can be measured with the lofty monuments and changing spatial arrangement of the urban plan. The third phase of Bagan is more distinctive with the clustering of small monuments and complexes of Buddhist monasteries. The fourth phase is the monuments after decline of Bagan dynastic power. The four phases of Bagan visual arts each contain secular evidence of Bagan. Most Bagan visual art emphasized religious themes and elite society. Secular evidence can also be seen in epigraphy such as slaves, relatives, artisans, office staff. In visual art, there are three categories: (1) architecture; (2) sculpture and (3) painting. The transitions in artistic style contain information of secular ways of life in Bagan. In this study, the household archaeology of Bagan is defined from secular depictions in the plastic arts.
Pyiet Phyo Kyaw
- Conference Proceedings Book
- SEAMEO CHAT & SOAS SAAAP University of London