VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Yao Mun wedding crown
10.5.12/1-12
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

This is beautifully hand forged, combining pure silver and human hair. The crown itself has nine separate pieces. The main part is a disc shape made of 163 silver pins secured with kapok, cotton and human hair. A second disc is made of filigreed and etched silver. The crown includes seven separate pins, four of them with chains, dragon-head-shaped pin heads, and silk and silver tassels.

History of the Object
This was created in Ban Nam Lue and purchased from Mr. Yat's family on 17 June 2007 by Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre (as it was in the process of being taken to Thailand to be sold to antique traders). The family knew very little about its history -- but it had been passed down for at least two generations. The family wished to sell the crown as they wanted to buy a motorbike for the son who worked in Luang Namtha town. They used to rent out the crown for weddings, at 30,000 k (about US$3.50) each time.

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Type
Costume and Jewelry 
Materials
Pure silver, human hair, silk, cotton, kapok, seed. 
Measurements
Width 25 cm. Height 15 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Nam Lue village, Luangnamtha district and province. 
Geography
Laos 
Time period
AD 20th century ~ AD 20th century 
Creation date
20th Century; believed to be early 20th century 
Function
This wedding crown was worn by a bride during the wedding ceremony, and by a groom's female assistants before a wedding ceremony. 
Acquisition
Acquired by TAEC in 2007, during a field visit to Ban Nam Lue to research the Yao Mun ethnic group. 
Copyright
In situ photos copyright Kees Sprengers/TAEC. 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre. 
Museum
Traditional Arts and Ethnology Centre 
Credit line
 

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