Exhibition book



For thousands of years, across mainland and island Southeast Asia, the deification of significant ancestors and the veneration of spirits of nature have formed the basis of traditional beliefs. It has also been the impetus for the creation of splendid and extraordinary works of art in fibre, stone, metal, wood and clay—made to protect and give pleasure to the living, to honour the ancestors and to secure safe passage for the human soul between this world and the afterlife.

Life death and magic: 2000 years of Southeast Asian ancestral art provides an evocative overview of the region’s ancestral arts and culture, from prehistoric times to the twenty-first century. Beautifully designed, it is prolifically illustrated with works of art from countries and regions including Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, East Timor, Brunei, Thailand, Cambodia and southern China which are drawn from museums around the world and the National Gallery of Australia’s exceptional collection of Southeast Asian art.



Pub date: Sept 2010
256 pages
300 x 247 mm, hc, beautifully illustrated in
full colour with over 200 images.
ISBN 9780642334152

RRP AUD $69.95
$59.95 special NGA and exhibition venue price
Available from the NGA Shop, NGA mail order & selected bookstores.

Distributed by Thames & Hudson Australia, Thames & Hudson UK and University of Washington Press, USA

Published in conjunction with a major exhibition
at the National Gallery of Australia

13 Aug – 31 Oct 2010


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