Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tep Pranam

This standing Buddha at Tep Pranam has been reconstructed with concrete and its original sandstone pieces - its head is not original and its posture is one of giving instruction and teaching
Another of the smaller temple sites that I visited on my bike ride around Angkor Thom a few weeks ago was Tep Pranam. It's easy to miss as there's no sanctuary or obvious structure, instead its a raised terrace that leads onto two large Buddhist statues, where locals come to worship and pay their respects. Dates for this former monastery differ, some as early as the 9th century some as late as the 16th, but what we see today is both the large seated Buddha, and the standing Buddha behind, have been reassembled from broken pieces. There are some excellent sandstone lions at the start of the terrace alongwith some broken nagas and tucked behind the seated Buddha are some assorted pieces of sculpture. Tep Pranam and Preah Palilay are very close together and see few visitors, so its a secluded and quiet spot away from the crowds.
A massive reassembled seated Buddha calling the Earth to witness and to attain enlightenment at Tep Pranam
A close-up of Buddha's hand where concrete has been added to the original sandstone to make the hand whole again
Perhaps one of my favourite lion statues in all of Angkor, I love the expression on the face, fierce and questioning at the same time
A broken slab of sandstone with a carving of a seated Buddha, tucked behind the larger statue

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