Wat Rong Khun white temple

Superman flies through the paintings on a temple wall. A towering demon rises above you wielding a sword. Hands reach out from the depths below you on a bridge to a heavenly temple. Shrunken heads sprouting Spanish moss hang from tree branches. Thai angels and mystical creatures cavort through the temple grounds and on the masterpiece sanctuary at the temple’s heart. Wander through the magical world of Wat Rong Khun, often referred to in English as the White Temple.

Perhaps the most unique temple in the Kingdom of Thailand, the White Temple was born from the devotion of National Artist Chalermchai Kositpipat. A deeply devout Buddhist famed primarily for his religious-themed paintings, Chalermchai began the White Temple in 1997. Wat Rong Khun however is no traditional temple. Chalermchai re-imagines Thai art for the modern world. As you move through the temple grounds, you find yourself in the artist’s surreal vision of Buddhist teachings. Superheroes, movie stars and cartoons make their entrance into temple murals depicting traditional Buddhist motifs. Fantastical sculptures and architecture cover the landscape.

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