Chen-la

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Scope note
Refers to the pre-Angkor style and period surrounding the Cambodian kingdoms of Chen-la (1st to 9th centuries) heavily influenced by Indian ideas. The style is mainly evident in the lower valleys of the Mekong River. Sculptural production in this style consists of large, freestanding sandstone figures of deities from Hindu, Siva, and Vishnu texts. Religious sculptures often consist of several deities combined into a single figure and is characterized by smooth, continuous surfaces enhanced by broad frontal planes and by side recessions connected to the foursquare block. The period also witnessed the rudimentary development of non-Indian elements such as the sandstone lintels made for doorways of brick shrines, the concept of the lintel as a special attribute of the spirit shrine, and relief carvings based on pairs of monster creatures and foliate designs. Buddhist icons in this style are constructed in sandstone and are less sensuous and delicate than Hindu figures.
Chen-la
Accepted term: 17-Jun-2024