"Collection of photographs at Vat Saen Sukharam, Luang Prabang, Laos, established by Pha Khamchan Virachitta, Abbot of Vat Saen Sukharam [1920s-2008]"

The collection holds mostly photographs of the Theravada Buddhist world of Laos and Luang Prabang, taken by monks or Buddhist laypeople since the 1850s, with a small number of images that are reproductions of earlier prints or paintings. A small number of texts, certificates, or documents are also present. The subject matter includes images of Buddha statues, Buddhist ceremonies, people’s festivals, landscape/architecture, monastery/architecture, meetings/conferences, group portraits of laypeople with and without monks, group and individual portraits of monks, meditation images, pictures relating to the royal court, and a large number of portraits of Pha Khamchan Virachitta as well as rich travel material (pilgrimages and visits of the Lao diaspora after the Pathet Lao revolution). The photographs, found in cabinets and in a number of frames, were collected while the contributor lived as a Buddhist monk and abbot at Vat Saen Sukharam, Luang Prabang.

Copyright by the Lao Buddhist Fellowship, Luang Prabang District.

Annotations and inscriptions in Lao, Pali (Tham script), French, Khmer, Thai and English.

The total number of photographs from Vat Saen is 7,509 prints and 2,911 negatives and transparencies.

Scans and digital photography. All items are scanned recto; if there are annotations on the back, there is also a verso scan.