Pictorial Cambodian Textiles
written by Gill Green
River Books | ISBN 9789749863398
Paperback – 168 pages
Member’s price: $81.00
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The pictorial representations of Cambodian silk hangings, pidan, are unique in mainland Southeast Asia. Many of the few surviving antique textiles of this genre visualise, in astounding detail, Theravada Buddhist themes and are a response in silk to similar images in other artistic media also used in community religious practice. The imagery of another genre of pidan springs from a different source, and are distinguished by their common theme of a triad of bird/snake/tree of life. In addition some of this group have images of ships ranging from realistic to arcane. Latest research suggests that these hangings were essential to celebrations held at the end of the rainy season in Cambodia. This book illuminates many facets of these spectacular cloths. Assembling for the first time a comprehensive collection of pictorial pidan from private and public collections, many hitherto unpublished, the reader can revel in the wealth of cultural references encoded in the patterns.