Art of Burma

As I procure works for my collection, it rarely occurs that I find a set or series of pieces by the same artist.  Today, I found a set of four works by the same artist.  The artist, #MuangLarBan, was from Burma or Myanmar and these works come from around 1936.

Shwedagon Pagodaby Maung Lar Ban @ 1936

Shwedagon Pagoda
by Maung Lar Ban @ 1936

Burma, also known as Myanmar, is a sovereign state in Southeast Asia bordered by China, Thailand, India, Laos and Bangladesh.

The first image is probably the best known site in Burma, the marvellous #ShwedagonPagoda in Rangoon.  Sitting high atop the sacred shrine of Singuttara Hill, the pagoda houses the  relics of The Buddha and three Buddhas that preceded him.  Encased in gold and jewels, the beauty of it’s architecture and design will amaze you, as will the sparkling of it’s jewels. This wondrous holy place is filled with spirituality, history and legend.

The following three images portray, I believe, waterside village scenes on Inle Lake.  Local fishermen are known for practising a distinctive rowing style which involves standing at the stern on one leg and wrapping the other leg around an oar. This unique style evolved for the reason that the lake is covered by reeds and floating plants making it difficult to see above them while sitting. Standing provides the rower with a view beyond the reeds. However, this leg rowing style is the practice of the men only. Women row in the customary style, using the oar with their hands, sitting cross legged at the stern.

Inle Lake Iby Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

Inle Lake I
by Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

Inle Lake IIby Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

Inle Lake II
by Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

Inle Lake IIIby Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

Inle Lake III
by Muang Lar Ban @ 1936

I love the colours in these pictures and love the image of villager life which they portray. I hope you enjoy them too.

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7 Responses to Art of Burma

  1. Charlie Green says:

    Thank you for sharing these images. I was striving to learn more of Lar Ban, for I discovered 5 unframed watercolors in a drawer at my mother’s home. They must have been there for years, for the colors are wonderfully vivid.

    • Michelle says:

      Hello, Ron. My husband’s parents lived in Burma in the 1950’s. We have (2) framed paintings by Muang Lar Ban that they acquired during their time there (my in-laws are now deceased). The paintings are quite lovely and in very good condition. One is a white bridge crossing over a body of water with the Shwedagon Pagoda in the background. There is also a red pagoda near the bridge. The 2nd painting is of two villagers walking along the road (one is carrying a rod across his shoulders with a bucket on each end.). We would enjoy learning more about Lar Ban but can’t seem to find anything on line. If Lar Ban’s works are of any value, we may or may not consider sending them to auction. Do you know where we might start our search for more information on Muang Lar Ban? Thank you in advance for any assistance you are able to provide!

      • ronald972 says:

        I have found little information as to the artist and certainly no overly helpful
        websites which contain anything but very basic information on the artist.

  2. Gary Swartzlander says:

    Was anyone able to determine anything else about the artist or the paintings? I believe I have 2 or 3 of them and want to find out more.

  3. Arlin Weingold says:

    My late wife, a Brit, was born in Burma in 1927 and lived there through 1938. I have several framed Lar Ban watercolours and a few sketches and unframed works. Is there a market for this art?

    • ronald972 says:

      Dear Arlin
      The best way to find out is to visit a local auction house and see what their estimate would be. A sale concentrating on ‘far eastern’ art would likely maximise your return.

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