Burmese antique teak wood Buddha statues – Almost every monastery and temple in Myanmar house a collection of antique and old Buddha statues.
Teak Wood Buddha Statues found in Myanmar and Thailand are often heavily embellished with mosaics, thayo lacquer and gilded. Although most new statues are decorated with artificial gold leaf, many of the older statues were gilded with real gold leaf.
Teak Wood once in abundance in Myanmar (Burma) has become a rare commodity due to their long history of logging which escalated during the British colonial period. Illegal logging still persists today in some remote areas of Myanmar; most of this wood is shipped to the international market. Teak wood is very often used in the shipping industry due to its hardiness in water.
Natural teak wood forests exist in only four countries, Myanmar, India, Laos and Thailand; with around 75% of the worlds teak market originating from Burma, although this is slowly changing due to government restriction on exporting teak wood to foreign countries in order to allow the teak wood forests to recover.
Today many Buddha statues in Myanmar are crafted using other types of hard wood and soft wood. There are currently regeneration programs in place to grow teak wood in Myanmar (Burma), which will of course take many years years to grow into mature trees.