“Adoration and Glory” is a celebration of centuries of artistic achievements of the Khmer peoples, a civilization nearly forgotten. The Khmer empire created one of the world’s most glorious traditions of sculpture and architecture, inspired and influenced by the spiritual and in particular the Tantric, Hindu and Buddhist cultures and religions of India. The domains of the Khmer grew from a collection of small kingdoms to an empire that encompassed much of present day Cambodia, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam. Due to Cambodia’s more recent historic past, decades of political turbulence and isolation the public hardly got a chance to admire the magnificent artistic creations of this nearly forgotten culture.
For the first time now this book offers a comprehensive overview of the outstanding capabilities and craftsmanship of ancient Khmer artists. Many important pieces in stone, bronze, silver and gold are published here for the very first time. As the book brings together the wealth of the Khmer culture, the authors were able to gain access to private as well as public collections worldwide to give unparalleled access to more than 150 objects. With the inclusion of Tantric Hindu and Buddhist images never seen in public and new technical research into manufacturing techniques by leading museum scientist Dr Pieter Meyers, the publication suggests many fresh interpretations of Khmer art and culture particularly at a time when the authenticity of newly excavated material is often in question.
From the beginning, the book gained the support of HRH Princess Norodom Buppha Devi, Minister of Culture and Fine Arts, Kingdom of Cambodia as well as the Directors and teams at the National Museum of Cambodia. Both accessible and scholarly, this book represents an important resource for connoisseurs and aficionados of art, art historians, collectors and all those interested in the cultures of South East Asia. It contributes to a new and deeper understanding of Khmer art, and encourages further research and worldwide interest in helping Cambodia to protect and celebrate its rich artistic past.