Product ID: 77112
Walking through a forest of golden foliage, a family of elephants enjoys a day of leisure. This scene of tradition is inspired by the mural paintings of central Thailand. Nantana Sompamitre hand-carves the statuette from mango wood and coats it with several layers of lacquer, which she prepares from the Gluta usitata tree and ashes of burnt rice paddy husks.
Sompamitre executes the moving scene with a traditional gilding technique called lai rot nam (watered pattern). First the patterns are engraved free-hand with a sharp-pointed tool, and then the piece is dusted with a wooden powder. The black background is covered with a yellow gummy paint, which comes from a tree resin that has been placed in water for a day. After that, a thin coat of lacquer is applied to the entire surface and, before it dries, gold leaf is placed over it. The piece is then left to dry for approximately 20 hours. Finally, the whole lacquerware is thoroughly rinsed in water rinsing out impurities or unattached gold leaf. The result is a piece of rich artistry, where shimmering gold engraved designs contrast against a high-gloss black background.