I have just returned from more than two weeks spent recording the culture, art and architecture in Chiang Mai, in the north of Thailand.
I was very fortunate to have the help of a lot from various people while I was there:
- Ajahn Suthep, who arranged for my stay in Wat Sri Suphan
- Phra Khru Phitaksutthikhun, Abbot of Wat Sri Suphan, who was no end of help and kindness
- Phra Supachai who was my principal guide to the culture and history of the province
- Phra Wichai, who took me to many of the temples when Supachai was away
- Chanya Depaul, who took me to Doi Suthep and Wat Buak Krok Luang
- Namfon Amornsurakarn, who helped me get to Wiang Kum Kam and Lamphun
A big, big sadhu to them for all their help!
In quite a short time I managed to take over 2,000 photographs of the various temples and historical sites in the region (not all will be published, of course), and travelled to Fang, Tha Ton, Chiang Rai and Lamphun, besides the main work that was done around Chiang Mai.
Unlike previous photoshoots, I didn’t edit and write it up on the spot, but just spent the time collecting the material, and now I have returned, with good broadband access, and a full-sized screen for editing I am preparing the albums.
The first four albums have just been published, and cover some of the out-of-station sites. On the last but one day of the trip Phra Supachai took me to an old temple in Fang, which just happened to have some great modern murals recounting the Life of King Mangrai, the founder of Lanna, and that was the first album I prepared.
The albums taken at Wiang Kum Kam, which was Mangrai’s capital prior to Chiang Mai and Lamphun, the site of the ancient Mon kingdom that Mangrai incorporated into Lanna have also been posted now.
I have also added histories, maps and illustrative materials to the various pages, to give a better understanding of the history and culture of the region. Please visit the Thailand page of my Photo Dharma website to access the material.
I will continue updating the page over the coming weeks, but meanwhile here are a few highlights from the albums so far published:
The Three Kings, Fang
On a Boat, Fang
Reclining Buddha, Lamphun
Chedi and Parasol, Lamphun
Festooned Viharn, Wiang Kum Kam
Ubosot and Monk, Wiang Kum Kam