1855 Burma Landscape  

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Colossal Statue of the Gautama close to the N.end of the wooden bridge

Object - Photographed

Place of origin - Burma (Photographed)

Date- 1855 Artist/Maker - Tripe, Linnaeus ( photographer ) Materials and Techniques- Salted paper print from waxed paper ( calotype )negative Current Location - Victoria & Albert Museum Museum number - 1527 - 1909 Gallery Location - In Store

Physical description

A colossal stone figure of the Buddha surrouned by trees and small zedi (stupas/pagodas).


August 1855 to November 1855 (photographed)
1857 (printed and published)


Height: 249 mm (photographic print)
Width: 341 mm (photographic print)

Object history note

This photograph was one of a series from Burma Views which was presented to the V&A in July 1909 by Lady Ida Low, wife of Malcolm Low, Esq., of the Bengal Civil Service and daughter-in-law of General Sri John Low. As a member of the Council of India in 1857, Sir John Low received the Burma Views (1857) set on 15th April 1857.
See Registry files for papers on acceptance of gift.
See Dewan p.255 for listings of other copies of the same photograph elsewhere.

This photograph was published in the album Burma Views 1857, by Captain L. Tripe, official photographer to the Government of India's Mission to Ava [Burma]. Tripe made over 200 photographs during this trip, and the captions to the images are thought to be a collaboration between Tripe and the secretary to the Mission to Ava, Henry Yule.

Tripe’s Burma Views were distributed widely and were very well received. Tripe sent 50 copies to Calcutta. Fourteen sets from these were distributed by the Government of India, including seven sets to members of the Mission to Ava, former capital of Burma. Twenty sets were ordered by the East India Company’s Court of Directors, and most were given to members of the Court. It is not known what happened to the remaining sixteen sets. Due to Tripe’s ownership of the negatives, he printed a selection of his photographs for further distribution. A set of 92 views of Burma was given to the King of Prussia, and more sets were given to the Madras Photographic Society and associated figures. Two hundred and ninety additional prints were offered for sale at 2 Rupees per print at Griffiths and Co., Madras.

Historical context note

In April 1855 Lord Dalhousie, governor general of India, advised on a political trip to Amerapoora, Burma following the annexation of Pengu (part of Burma) by the British after the 1852 Anglo-Burmese war. Tripe was sent to accompany the party in 1855 as official photographer. The photographs he made during his stay resulted in his album of 122 images, Burma Views, published in 1857. These photographs result from this project, and have Tripe’s original numbering and titles on their mounts.

Descriptive line

Photograph, 19th century, No.46 from series 'Burma Views' by Linneaus Tripe, 'Colossal Statue of Gautama close to the N.end of the wooden bridge', salted paper print, 1855

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Dewan, Janet. The Photographs of Linnaeus Tripe: A Catalogue Raisonné. Toronto: Art Gallery of Ontario, 2003, p.255.

Labels and date

Colossal Statue of the Gautama Buddha
Amerapoora (Amarapura), 1786
By Linnaeus Tripe (1822–1902)

Measuring 11.4 metres in height, this figure sits in the pose of bhumisparsha mudra, in which the Buddha calls the earth goddess to witness his enlightenment. It acquired the popular name ‘Left in the Sun Image’ as it did not originally have a roof over it. Now sheltered, it is known as the Taung-min-Gyi Buddha.

Subjects depicted - Tree, Pagodas; Buddha

Production Type and Product Note -Limited edition

Collection code - IND

This entry was posted on Sep 27, 2009 at Sunday, September 27, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


What exactly is the Gaudama statue in the photograph printed in the British Burma Gazeteer 9Vol. 1) printed in 1880. Where is it? I noticed that Moslems ahd severly damaged the nose and part of the face.

May 8, 2020 at 4:42 AM

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