Buddhist Art of Myanmar

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Buddhist Art of MyanmarEdited bySylvia Fraser-Lu and Donald M. StadtnerAsia Society Museum in association with Yale University Press, New Haven and LondonThis book is dedicated to John Guth (19242014)


<p>buddhist art ofmyanmarEdited bySylvia Fraser-Lu and Donald M. StadtnerAsia Society Museumin association withYale University Press, New Haven and Londonbuddhist art ofmyanmarPublished on the occasion of the exhibitionBuddhist Art of Myanmar, organized by Asia Society Museum.Asia Society Museum, New YorkFebruary 10May 10, 2015 Asia Society, New York, NY, 2015.All rights reserved. This book may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, including illustrations, in any form (beyond that copying permitted by Sections 107 and 108 of the U.S. Copyright Law and except by reviewers for the public press), without written permission from the publishers.Published byAsia Society725 Park AvenueNew York, NY 10021AsiaSociety.orgYale University PressP.O. Box 209040302 Temple StreetNew Haven, CT 06520- 9040yalebooks.com/artDesigned by Anjali Pala, Miko McGinty Inc.Set in Kievit by Tina HendersonPrinted in Hong Kong by Asia OneLibrary of Congress Control Number: 2014942696ISBN 978- 0- 300- 20945- 7A catalogue record for this book is available from theBritish Library.The paper in this book meets the requirements of ansi/niso z39.48- 1992 (Permanence of Paper). 10987654321Cover illustrations: (front) Detail of cat. no. 12; (back) Detail of cat. no. 60Page ii: Detail of cat. no. 43Page vi: Detail of cat. no. 60Page x: Cat. no. 26Pages 22829: Maps designed by Anandaroop RoyThis book is dedicated toJohn Guth(19242014)Asia Society has lost a great friend and champion.He will be remembered for his friendship, generosity,and support of Asian arts. ContentsviiiPresidents Foreword|Josette SheeranxiStatement: Ministry of Culture, The Republic of the Union of Myanmar|H.E. U Aye Myint KyuxiiCurators Acknowledgments|Sylvia Fraser- Lu and Donald M. StadtnerxivFunders of the ExhibitionxivLenders to the ExhibitionxvNote to the Reader1Essays3Myanmar: Forging a Nation|Sylvia Fraser- Lu and Donald M. Stadtner11Foundation Myths of Myanmar|Patrick Pranke and Donald M. Stadtner19Inscriptions and Chronicles: The Historiography of Myanmar|U Tun Aung Chain27Buddhism and Its Practice in Myanmar|Patrick Pranke35Myanmar and the Outside World|Jacques Leider45The Buddhas Smile: Art of the First Millennium|Robert L. Brown and Donald M. Stadtner55Ancient Pagan: A Plain of Merit|Donald M. Stadtner65After Pagan: The Art of Myanmar, 12871900|Sylvia Fraser- Lu75Buddhist Image Replication in Myanmar|Adriana Proser81Art, Power, and Merit: The Veneration of Buddha Images in Myanmar Museums|Heidi Tan89CatalogueEntries by Robert L. Brown, Sylvia Fraser- Lu, Adriana Proser, Catherine Raymond,Donald M. Stadtner, and U Thaw Kaung228Map of Myanmar and Surrounding Countries229Map of Myanmar230Chronology|Jacques Leider231Glossary241Bibliography248Contributors250Index256Photography CreditsviiiPresidents ForewordThisexhibition,BuddhistArtofMyanmar,isthefrstmajor presentation in the United States devoted solely to the art of Myanmar.Themajorityofartworkonloaninthisexhibition has been drawn from fve museums across Myanmar and rep-resents a signifcant occasion in the history of relations between the United States and Myanmar during the past twenty years. The exhibition had its genesis three years ago when President TheinSeingaveapublicaddressatAsiaSocietyinNewYork and expressed interest in fostering cultural exchange between MyanmarandtheUnitedStates.TwomonthslaterMelissa Chiu,formerMuseumDirectorandSeniorVicePresidentof Global Arts and Cultural Programs and current Director of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, visited Myanmar to pursue the productive collaboration with ofcials in Myanmar in the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Religious Afairs that would become the present exhibition. AsiaSocietyMuseumhasalonghistoryofdeveloping exhibitions that explore less familiar areas of Asian art. Whether exquisite treasures of the little-known Liao dynasty (9071125) concurrentwiththebetterstudiedSongdynasty(9061279); thedazzlinggildedfguresoftheDensatilMonasteryatits height from the thirteenth to ffteenth century, but destroyed duringthetwentiethcentury;oroverlookedmasterworksof revolutionary China or modern Iran, the Museums mission has been to introduce audiences to the best art from Asia. This has often included the organization of major frst-time loan exhibi-tions such as one of extraordinary art of Gandhara from muse-umsinPakistan,orahistoricalsurveyofartandantiquities from Vietnam, representing more than twenty years of cultural diplomacythatpredatednormalizationofrelationsbetween the United States and Vietnam. Like those projects, the present exhibitionprovidesinsightintothecultureofMyanmarata time of its renewed engagement with much of the world. The project would not have come to fruition without the inexhaust-ible eforts and enthusiasm of Melissa Chiu and I congratulate her and applaud her achievement. Asia Society is deeply grate-ful for her energy for this project, as for so many groundbreak-ing eforts the Museum has undertaken during her tenure.ManyindividualsinMyanmaroferedcriticalsupportfor thisproject.TheyincludeH.E.UAyeMyintKyu,UnionMinis-ter for Culture; H. E. Daw Sanda Khin, Deputy Minister; U Kyaw Oo Lwin, Director General, Department of Archaeology and the NationalMuseum;UAungNaingMyint,HeadoftheOfceof the Ministry of Culture; U Thein Lwin, Deputy-Director General, Department of Archaeology and the National Museum; Daw Nu MraZan,MuseumConsultantandDeputy-DirectorGeneral- retired, Department of Archaeology and the National Museum; DawMieMieKhaing,Director,InternationalRelations,Depart-mentofArchaeologyandtheNationalMuseum;UNgweTun Myint, Director, National Museum, Yangon; U Myint Zaw, Direc-tor, National Museum, Nay Pyi Taw; Daw Htay Htay Swe, Deputy Director of the Ministry Ofce; Daw Mie Mie Thet New, Deputy Director, National Museum, Yangon; Daw Aye Aye Thinn, Deputy Director,NationalMuseum,NayPyiTaw;UNaingWin,Direc-tor,BaganArchaeologyBranch,DepartmentofArchaeology andtheNationalMuseum;DawBaby,DeputyDirector,Bagan ArchaeologicalMuseum;UWinKyaing,PrincipaloftheField School of Archaeology, Pyay; U Myo Tint Aung, Deputy Director, Pyay Archaeological Branch, Department of Archaeology and the National Museum; and Daw Myint Myint Thein, Assistant Direc-tor,SriKsetraArchaeologicalMuseum,Hmawza.Similarly,from the Union of Myanmar Ministry of Religious Afairs we thank H. E. U Sant Sint, Union Minister for Religious Afairs; U Khaing Aung, Director General, Department of Promotion and Propagation of Sasana; Daw Yin Yin Myint, Deputy Director, External Missions; and Daw Nwe Nwe, Assistant Curator, Kaba Aye Buddhist Art Museum. Among the others who were most helpful in our eforts to realize this project are Terry Tan, Serge Pun, and Judy Ko. I also would like to thank Alan Chong, Director of the Asian Civilisations Museum and the Paranakan Museum, Singapore, for his early support. We hope that a greater awareness of the history of Bud-dhism in Myanmar will contribute to our deeper understanding of Myanmars developing role in the twenty-frst century.Josette SheeranPresident and CEOMyanmar_Interior_MECH_Corr(2014-10-22).indd 8 10/22/14 4:46 PMix MUSEUM PREFACEMuseum PrefaceWe are proud to present Buddhist Art of Myanmar, an exhi-bitionandcataloguewhichprovideaframeworkforserious understandingoftheroleofBuddhistartthroughoutmany centuries in Myanmar. The artworks included in this presenta-tionrefectthecountrysrichandvariedethnicpopulations and religious practices, as well as its long history of interna-tional trade and cultural exchange.We have sought the most experienced scholars to illu-minateourunderstandingofthesubjectofBuddhistartin Myanmar and are grateful for the guidance of the exhibition curators, Sylvia Fraser-Lu and Donald M. Stadtner, for their commitmentandenthusiasmfortheprojectandthe extraordinary scholarship that has resulted in this exquisite exhibition.TheyhavebeenablysupportedbyAdriana Proser,JohnH.FosterSeniorCuratorforTraditionalAsian Art, as well as by the contributors to this catalogue, and we appreciate the work of Robert L. Brown, Jacques Leider, Pat-rick Pranke, Catherine Raymond, Heidi Tan, U Thaw Kaung, and U Tun Aung Chain. Thanks also are due to the many public and private lend-ers to this exhibition whose eforts were an important part of the realization of this project and deserve our deep apprecia-tion (see page xiv). This exhibition would not have been pos-siblewithoutthesupportofmajordonorswhoarelisted elsewhere in this catalogue (see page xiv). We would like to makespecialmentionofJohnandPollyGuthfortheir long-standingcommitmenttoandpatronageofexhibitions of this kindwithout them this important project would not have been possible. Thisexhibitionhasbeneftedgreatlyfromthecommit-ment of Asia Societys staf. We want to recognize the leader-ship of Josette Sheeran, President and CEO, and Melissa Chiu, former Museum Director and Senior Vice President of Global ArtsandCulturalPrograms,andothersontheAsiaSociety teamwhoweresohelpfulinrealizingthisproject,including SuzanneDiMaggio,formerVicePresidentofGlobalPolicy Programs,andRachelCooper,DirectorofGlobalPerforming Arts and Special Cultural Initiatives. Particular thanks go to the museum team: Adriana Proser, John H. Foster Senior Curator forTraditionalAsianArt,whoworkedcloselywiththecura-tors to shape the exhibition and publication; Clare McGowan, SeniorRegistrarandCollectionsManager,whocoordinated theloansandtransportandinstallationarrangements;John Gatti, Installation Manager; Leise Hook, Museum Publication Coordinator, for her work on the book and interpretive mate-rials; Nick Pozek, Manager of Museum Digital Strategy; Nancy Blume,HeadofMuseumEducationPrograms;DonnaSaun-ders,ExecutiveAssistant;andLailiPaksima,formerManager ofGlobalMuseumEventsandSpecialInitiatives.Inaddition toRachelCooper,LaFrancesHui,AnneKirkup,andRachel Rosado also have contributed to the exhibition and catalogue in diferent capacities. Thanks also are due to our copublisher, Yale University Press; to Alicia Turner for her expert editorial assistancewiththemanuscript;toMikoMcGintyandAnjali Pala for the truly beautiful book design; and to Clayton Vogel fortheexceptionalexhibitiondesign.OthersatAsiaSoci-etywhoshouldbethankedfortheirsupportincludeTom Nagorski, Executive Vice President; Elaine Merguerian, Direc-tor of Communications and Marketing, and their team for pub-lic relations and marketing; Christine Davies, Linsey LaFrenier, and the External Afairs team for their fundraising eforts; and Dan Washburn, Megan MacMurray, Tahiat Mahboob, and JefTompkins for their contributions to the website production. We hope you will enjoy this exhibition and catalogue.Peggy LoarInterim Vice President for Global Arts and CultureMarion KocotMuseum Deputy DirectorMyanmar_Interior_MECH_Corr(2014-10-22).indd 9 10/22/14 4:46 PMxiiCurators Acknowledgmentstionsateachofthemuseumsandinstitutionswevisited. WewouldliketothankallthestafoftheRepublicofthe Union of Myanmar Ministry of Culture and museums, noted previously in the Presidents Foreword, who understood the importanceofthisexhibitionandgenerouslyprovidedus with assistance.We would also like to ofer our heartfelt thanks to those who have made it possible to include some additional loans frompublicandprivatecollectionsintheUnitedStates. These include Emily Kass, Director, Ackland Art Museum; Jay Xu,Director,andForrestMcGill,ChiefCurator,AsianArt Museum,SanFrancisco;UniversityofNorthCarolinaat Chapel Hill; Catherine Raymond, Center for Burma Studies, NorthernIllinoisUniversity;SherryHarlacher,Director, DenisonMuseum;ChristophHeinrich,FrederickandJan MayerDirector,andRonaldOtsuka,Dr.JosephdeHeer CuratorofAsianArt,DenverArtMuseum;MichaelGovan, CEOandWallisAnnenbergDirector,andStephenMarkel, The Harry and Yvonne Lenart Curator and Department Head ofSouthandSoutheastAsianArt,LosAngelesCounty Museum of Art; Thomas P. Campbell, Director, and John Guy, South Asian Curator, Metropolitan Museum of Art; Malcolm Rogers,AnnandGrahamGundDirector,andJanePortal, MatsutaroShorikiChair,ArtofAsia,Oceania,andAfrica, MuseumofFineArts,Boston;MargaretGlover,Divisionof Art,PrintsandPhotographs,NewYorkPublicLibrary; Lynne M.Thomas,Curator,RareBooksandSpecialCollec-tions,NorthernIllinoisUniversityRareBookCollection; RonaldL.Krannich;andtheprivatecollectorswhowishto remain anonymous.We are also very grateful to all of the catalogue authors. Numerouscolleaguescontributedbyreviewingtheessays andcatalogueentries.Forthetwoessayscoveringthefrst millennium and the Pagan period, we wish to thank Robert L. Brown,PhyllisGranof,andPamelaGutman.Also,wemust thank Catherine Raymond and Jacques Leider for generously Early in 2013 we were approached by Asia Society to jointly create an exhibition devoted to Buddhist art from Myanmar. We were both thrilled by the prospect of a show with loans from Myanmar and dedicated to the rich artistic production ofthatcountry.Tumultuousyearshadledtoaninward- facingMyanmar,butthisisolation,decadesinduration, unexpectedly ended about four years ago. A new Myanmar isnowemergingandenthusiasticallyembracingtheglobal community.Wearedelightednowtohavetheopportunity tohelpsharesomeofMyanmarsgreatculturalachieve-ments with the outside world.Shortly after our decision to serve as cocurators for the exhibition, we joined colleagues in the feld for an advisory meeting. Together we fne- tuned and expanded some of our ideasfortheexhibition.Wearegratefultothisesteemed group, which included Robert Brown, Professor, Department ofArtHistory,UniversityofCalifornia,LosAngeles,and Curator, Department of South and Southeast Asian Art, Los AngelesCountyMuseumofArt;PhyllisGranof,LexHixon Professor of World Religions, Department of Religious Stud-ies,YaleUniversity;PatrickPranke,AssistantProfessorof Religious Studies, Department of Humanities, University of Louisville;CatherineRaymond,DirectoroftheCenterfor BurmaStudies,NorthernIllinoisUniversity;andKitYoung, ArtisticDirectorfortheAllianceforNewMusic- Theatre, Washington,D.C.InadditiontoMelissaChiuandAdriana Proser,thefollowingAsiaSocietystafattendedthemeet-ingandcontributedtothediscussions:NancyBlume, HeadofMuseumEducationPrograms;RachelCooper, DirectorofGlobalPerformingArtsandSpecialCultural Initiatives;MarionKocot,MuseumDeputyDirector;La FrancesHui,AssistantDirectorofCulturalProgramsand FilmCurator;andClareMcGowan,SeniorRegistrarand CollectionsManager.AswerefnedourexhibitionobjectlistinMyanmarin the summer of 2013, we were overwhelmed by warm recep-Myanmar_Interior_MECH_Corr(2014-10-22).indd 12 10/22/14 4:46 PMxiii CURATORS ACKNOWLEDGMENTStaking on the extra tasks of writing the entry for the Rakhine bronzeBuddhafromtheNationalMuseum,NayPyiTaw, and creating the chronology for this catalogue, respectively. Also helpful throughout the project was Forrest McGill, who shared his insights; Tilman Frasch, who made valuable sug-gestions for the essay covering Pagan; and Bob Hudson and ElizabethMoore,whowerealwaystheretoanswerques-tions about the frst millennium and reviewed ou...</p>