Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Antique Burmese Naga / Nak

This is a rare example from Burma of a naga, or what Lao would consider a nak, in a part-human form.

He's fashioned from terra-cotta. Some distinctive features include the trident and the overall pose. The arm bands, bracelets, and the tie of the belt are also significant in identifying the region he's from. He was sold by an antique dealer to a private collector for an unknown sum and his location is currently unknown. He was 17 1/2 inches high. Given the amount of detail, and the rarity of such images, I think he's rather amazing and sure to inspire a great many stories.

We would consider the position unusual because it's very casual, yet serious. One might typically expect it standing in a sentinel pose or a fierce state of readiness. It would have been very interesting to have known who sculpted him and who purchased him over the years and where he was displayed.

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