Monday, January 7, 2008
Bangkok-based art dealer and internationally-recognised expert on Khmer Art, Douglas Latchford, has donated two sets of gold and crystal royal regalia to the National Museum in Phnom Penh. Hats off to Doug (pictured right), a 76 year old British collector whose donation has greatly enhanced the museum's flagging collection of gold items, as the very few pieces of Angkorean gold in existence are in private collections. The king and queen sets are believed to date from the 12th century. Latchford's latest book, co-authored with Emma Bunker, is called Khmer Gold: Gifts for the Gods, and follows on from the duo's joint effort in 2004, Adoration and Glory: The Golden Age of Khmer Art. Quirkily, when the book was released in Bangkok, Latchford, who is big into body-building competitions, hosted the event with the help of Thai tv and his body-building chums who modelled some of the pieces from his collection.