As the natural environment that shapes a way of life is ever changing, a community’s identity and cultural heritage thus formed are gradually withering away. Traditional craftmanship and artisanry that once underlied the soul of a community are alas threatened by inexorable changes in social conditions and cultural tastes that evolve with time.
December 8, 2018 - Chiang Mai - ‘TRACING THE FADING LEGACY, Stories of Living Legends’ an all-new exhibition at Raya Heritage, recounts the artisanry, life and cultural traditions of northern Thailand’s ancient Lanna period. Through the traditional crafts, artifacts and motifs showcased throughout this hotel, together with the stories relayed, the exhibition pays tribute to the craftsmen and women – the “living legends” – who may sadly be the last guardians of Lanna’s invaluable cultural heritage. Through the journey chronicled in this exhibition, it is hoped that the age-old knowledge and skills associated with this traditional artisanry would remain in the public consciousness and continue to be passed on to future generations. And it is from these artists, the “masters”, the “teachers” and their passion for their crafts and their stories that the inspiration for this exhibition was drawn. It is with a debt of gratitude to them that we are committed to ensuring their treasured past lives on and their crafts continue to be produced within their communities, providing livelihoods to their makers and reflecting their simple yet graceful approach to life and art.
In TRACING THE FADING LEGACY traditional Lanna way of life and various forms of artistry are narrated from the collective memory of the living legends themselves, through their words and recollections visually presented as well as still and motion photographs.
The exhibition is a chronicle of stories told perhaps by the very few remaining guardians of an important part of northern Thailand’s cultural heritage: a heritage that may fade into a mere legacy, one that our children and grandchildren may sadly not be able to ever witness.
The exhibition will be on display from December 8, 2018 – March 31, 2019.
Open daily 10:00 – 19:00 hrs. at Raya Heritage