Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Lao artist profile: Prince Nithakhong Somsanith

In 2006, as part of the ASIAALIVE program at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco visitors had an opportunity see the extraordinary work of Prince Nithakhong Somsanith who gladly shared his artistic skills with the community.
He is one of the last gold thread embroiderers in the ancient traditions from the former Lao royal capital of Luang Prabang. Among the highlights was instruction in gold leaf stenciling for architectural decoration.

Traditional materials include mulberry paper, gold leaf, lacquer, chisel, wooden mallet, and nails, and involved selecting a pattern, drawing the motifs and cutting the images, followed by placement and finally applying gold leaf. Visitors got to try their own hand at the art form. The page at http://www.asianart.org/laoarts.htm provides more information.

The acclaimed Lao Heritage Foundation works in partnership with the prince to share his skills with the community and the next generation. Hopefully he will be presented with many more opportunities in the coming years ahead to present across the country, and others will take the time to help him document his craft and process.

You can also visit his website: http://www.princesomsanith.com

1 comment:

Thassany Pothikan said...

Thanks for sharing. I love Lao arts.