Burmese Buddha Statues Jambhupati Style – dressed in royal attire, this style of Buddha is also referred to as a Royal King Buddha. They are both beautiful and decorative works of art. Decoration on the royal king Buddha can vary from simple with just a few jewels to very ornate. Embellished with glass mosaics and sometimes glass beads, with either large or small flanges flanking the sides of the head and crown, wearing large earrings falling down over the front of the shoulder and rings on one or all of the fingers.
In many wooden statues of the Jambhupati style, thayo lacquer, a resin derived from the tamarind tree is applied to the body to represent the outline of the robe. Many Mandalay Buddha Statues dating from the 18th century into the 20th century are decorated with fish scale pattern, also using thayo lacquer and when dry gilded with gold leaf.
A style unique to Myanmar is the wooden Buddha statue in the jambhupati style with detachable alabaster head, hands and feet with a tiered conical metal crown, flanges and earrings. The Burmese royal crowned Jambupati Buddha images were and still are made from a variety of materials such as marble, alabaster, bronze, brass, wood, paper Mache, jade and hollow sculptures made from bamboo or lacquer.
The Burmese royal crowned Jambhupati Buddha image originated from the story of the Buddha’s encounter with King Jambhupati, whereupon the Buddha adorned royal attire in order to humble the arrogant and overbearing king Jambhupati, who threatened one of his followers. The King on seeing the Buddha dressed in such splendor was overawed and from that day onward he became a follower of the Buddhist teachings and he himself became a monk and realised enlightenment.
The Jambhupati style Buddha images originated in India during the Pala period 750 A.D. – 1150 A.D., they subsequently became popular in most other Buddhist countries such as China, Burma, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia.