Burmese Buddha Statues
The history of Myanmar art is very complex, its origins lying with the ancient ethnic groups that inhabited the region in pre-historic times and its development through the ages resulting from the movements and merging of these groups amongst themselves and with migrant groups from elsewhere.
This website differs from other websites on Myanmar art or Burmese Art history in a number of ways. Firstly, the website focuses only on Buddhist art and Buddha images, especially artifacts from the Myanmar school of art. Secondly, the main aim of this website is to describe Myanmar's Buddhist art development in strict relation to the relevant history timeline; furthermore, artifacts are grouped in accordance with the name of the kingdom, the dynasty or the city where their distinctive style was found. Great care has also been taken to try to avoid causing possible confusion to the reader by analyzing the distinctive styles of each period very thoroughly and supporting this with authentic and relevant illustrations. Emphasis has been put on developments and the changing art styles of each period supported by sufficient historical evidence to be consistent with the statement "The Buddha images of each period were influenced by the social and political environment of the time".
Buddhist art is a reflection of history and can tell us, indirectly, of events that have occurred through the ages and art in human form, like Buddha Images and Buddha Statues, is its language. A study of these can reveal the origins and development of the different art styles. As stated above, some changes are made here to previously accepted categorization of Myanmar art driven by the desire to link each artifact with the period during which it was made, better to highlight the distinct styles of each particular period and the artisans who developed them.
Myanmar art history can be divided into two periods, according to archeological evidence provided by Buddhist human-figured sculptures and supported by information available from other forms of art, these are: