Vintage Panel of a Court Dancer, Myanmar/Burma (T052A-BLE)


H: 18.25”  W: 9.125”  D: 2.75” | FREE SHIPPING

This fine vintage teak carving depicts a Burmese dancer holding a sword with his right hand  behind his head. His attire includes elements of formal court dress: a court cap, a top with long sleeves ending at the wrists and collar with half-round segments, and a skirt-like sectioned pants with dramatic wing-like projections. Also, males and females could not touch during the performance.  As a set, the three panels the Female Farmer with a Hoe (T052C-BLE), Female Farmer with a Basket (T052B-BLE) and the Court Dancer T052A-BLE) would make a unique and charming wall arrangement.


Traditional Burmese dance has its roots in folk religion and is a combination of ancient animism, nat worship, and a later syncretic blend with Buddhism. Ethnic minorities often perform dances that include warriors carrying weapons, Zawgyi (shaman), and nats wielding swords or holding drums while dressed in full-body costumes. Performances in the Burmese kingdom were regulated with limitations on clothing, the use of silk, brocades, jewels, gold and silver, precious stones, and other decoration such as sashes, headgear, and footwear. Even today, Buddhism and Burmese folk religion are closely interwoven and it is common to see a Buddhist offering next to a nat shrine (sat-sin). The enthusiasm the Burmese have for celebrating and honoring their past arts is seen in vintage Burmese-carvings they have produced in the last 4-5 decades. Gifted woodcarvers are extremely talented at making buyers believe pieces are genuine antiques. This wall-art panel was likely made using old wood with insect-bored holes, cracks, minor damage and old nail holes as if it were detached from an old wall and small dashes of white also help to attest to its “oldness”. Although well-conceived “modern folk-art antiques” like this are very beautiful and charming creations that exhibit the skills and creative imagination of the artist, they are often presented as genuine antiques with an exaggerated date and an inflated price, which is not the case here.


Britannica, “Burmese Religion, Nats”

Facts and Details, “Nats (spirits) and Animism in Myanmar.”

Myanmar Tours Blog, “The Art of Traditional Dance in Myanmar” posted 31/01/2015,

Ma Thanegi and Barry Broman, Nats: Spirits of Fortune and Fear, Bangkok, iGroup Press Co., 2011.

Additional information

Weight 8 lbs
Dimensions 18 × 12 × 6 in

Antique/Vintage (1910-1980)


20th Century

Materials and Technique

Wood, polychrome

Dimensions (inches)

Ht: 18.25” W: 9.125” D: 2.75”

Dimensions (metric)

Ht: 46.35cm W: 23.17cm D: 6.98cm

Reference Number


Shipping Box Size


Made with an aged patina and expected paint losses and scrapes as if antique, no repairs or restorations.