Chalermchai Khositpipat: the creator of the White Temple
Believe it or not, this is a real place – Wat Rong Khun, better known as the White Temple, is a Buddhist temple in Thailand that looks like it was placed on earth by a god.
Though it may have involved divine inspiration, it was in fact designed by a man. Chalermchai Kositpipat, a Thai artist, designed the temple in 1997. It was almost destroyed by an earthquake in May of this year, but Kositpipat was inspired to rebuild the temple after an outpouring of international support urging him not to give up and let the temple crumble.
Wat Rong Khun, perhaps better known to foreigners as the White Temple, is a contemporary, unconventional, privately owned, art exhibit in the style of a Buddhist temple in Chiang Rai Province, Thailand.
Address: San Sai, Mueang Chiang Rai District, Chiang Rai 57000
Construction started: 1996
Function: Place of worship
Architectural styles: Hindu temple architecture, Buddhist architecture
The White Temple is the creation of Thai artist, Chalermchai Khositpipat who was born in 1951 in the village of Rong Khun in Chiang Rai province. The project is an act of faith by the internationally acclaimed artist who has invested large amounts of his own money to create the temple. Chalermchai’s aim is to make the temple one of the world’s greatest works of art and he wants visitors from around the world to enjoy the labor of love he has undertaken in his home village in his beloved Thailand. Work began on the new Wat Rong Khun temple in 1997, but the artist knows that there are still many years to go before the project is completed and he has made plans for work to continue in the event of his death.
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