Skip to comments.Finding the lost art of Angkor Wat
Posted on 06/07/2014 8:30:03 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
Long-lost paintings have been discovered on the walls of Cambodia's ancient Angkor Wat temple, thanks to the keen observations of an Australian National University (ANU) researcher.
The ancient paintings date back almost 500 years and depict deities, animals, boats and the temple itself, giving historians a new understanding of life in a relatively unknown period of Cambodia's history.
Rock art researcher Noel Hidalgo Tan discovered the hidden images while working as a volunteer at an archaeological excavation in Angkor Wat during a university break in 2010...
It was only when Tan enhanced the images on his computer that the paintings emerged, revealing the long-lost artworks...
Angkor Wat is one of the world's most famous monuments and a national symbol of Cambodia. Built in the 12th century, Angkor Wat was in the centre of the city of Angkor, which was the capital of the Khmer Empire from the 9th to the 15th centuries.
The world-heritage site attracts around two million tourists a year.
Despite the large number of visitors, the paintings had not been noticed. They were largely faded to the naked eye, and many were in dark areas of the temple.
Tan, from the ANU Department of Archaeology and Natural History, returned to the temple in 2012 to carry out a detailed investigation in collaboration with Cambodian researchers Im Sokrithy, Heng Than and Khieu Chan.
Remnants of paintings were originally thought to be graffiti left by early travellers to the temple. But to Tan's surprise, many of the paintings portrayed elaborate details of daily life, with little resemblance to other documented graffiti images.
The team suggests that the paintings seem to come from the 16th century reign of King Ang Chan, who commissioned a restoration of the temple to Theravada Buddhist use from a Vishnavaite Hindu temple.
(Excerpt) Read more at eurekalert.org ...
A hidden image at Angkor Wat temple showing life scenes. The enhanced image is below, and the original image is above. [Credit: Noel Hidalgo Tan]
Very cool! Image what a pleasant surprise it was to the researcher. I’m sure it put a big smile on his face!
Multispectral imaging has been used to read the Piso scrolls (the ones which haven’t been destroyed by the hundred or so idiots who insist on continuing to try to unroll them).
Out of the Ashes Recovering the Lost Library of Herculaneum
On a smaller scale, yet no less interesting, are the Cham ruins at My Son, Vietnam, about 30km from Danang, showing India’s influence on the region about the same time.
They are quite interesting. If you happen by, give them a look.
A number of very large cities in SE Asia sprang up in a few generations, grew to very large size, were recorded in annals in China, India, etc, and then just fell off the map. The very existence is often just denied on no scholarly basis, so the denial is probably rooted in politics (so much else is).
One of the segments on this collection — pound for pound, hands-down my all-time favorite documentary disk — pertains to another such place: