Burma, Temples, Pagodas Miranda Bruce-Mitford
Miranda Bruce-Mitford is leading Cox & Kings’ Burma: Golden Temples & Pagodas Royal Academy art tours next year (17 February – 02 March 2013 , 03 – 16 November 2013 ). Miranda studied Burmese language and literature at Soas, as well as lecturing on south and south-east Asian art at the British Museum and Soas, where she was tutor on the Asian arts diploma course for many years. Miranda is also author of two books on signs and symbols.
How and why did you become interested in Burmese art and architecture?
I first went to Burma as a student of language and literature, but I quickly realised that even today Buddhist art and architecture are central to Burmese life. In order to fully appreciate the temples, paintings and sculpture you really do need an understanding of the Buddhist religion as it is practised in this country. Then everything seems to fall into place, as it did for me. That’s when the temples came to life.
What do you enjoy most about leading a specialist tour such as this?
It’s fun to travel with like-minded people who want to find out things. I like watching people become engaged with the subject matter and the Burmese people. I like the pleasure in their eyes when they first see the Shwedagon Pagoda.
What do you most enjoy about visiting Burma?
I love the easy pace, the colours, the laughter and the golden pagodas.
What visit on the tour are you most looking forward to?
I love Pagan, on the banks of the Irrawaddy River. It is so peaceful and has a timeless quality. I love Inle Lake too, watching the fishermen skimming across the lake like water-boatmen.
If you could only recommend one book to read before departure, what would it be?
Impossible to answer – there are so many! For those that have booked onto the tour, I have provided an extensive reading list that caters to all tastes.
View Cox & Kings’ other Royal Academy art tours.