“New and Old” in Buddhist Places mural painting: Identity integration of Art in the reign of King rama IX from patronage by H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej

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Sitthidham Rohitasuk


This article is to study the royal initiation of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej the Great (the King’s Father or King Rama IX), in the role as the patron of artists for the restoration and creation of new mural paintings at the Phuttharatanasathan (the Chapel of the Inner Court), the Grand Palace, in B.E. 2542 (A.D. 1999). It is also the study on the format of such mural painting as well. The result of the study show that King Rama IX had faith and a deep connection with Phuttharatanasathan. His royal intention was to depict the incidents related to the Phuttharatanasathan and the country from the reign of King Rama IV to the reign of King Rama IX through mural paintings of Phuttharatanasathan so that people in the following generations can study history correctly from the mural paintings. The correct information is essential factor. King Rama IX had the idea that “new things,” which are the pattern and course of western arts, should be blended together with the “old things” which are traditions and Thai mural painting styles, so as to attain the mural paintings that look realistic. In addition, the focus on correct details and perfect blending with old Thai mural painting styles is another important development of Thai Contemporary Art which can conserve and improve works of Thai arts.


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