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14 May 2018Stamford Raffles: art collector and discoverer of Singapore
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Stamford Raffles: art collector and discoverer of Singapore DENISE HEYWOOD Monday 14 May 2018

Sir Stamford Raffles

Art Collector and Discoverer of Singapore




Raffles, whose name is synonymous with a luxury hotel rather than the greatest Buddhist temple in the world, was the enlightened colonal administrator of Java, Indonesia. In 1804 he discovered the 8th century temple of Borobudur, hidden under volcanic ash, acquired wondrous artefacts such as shadow puppets and textiles, now in the British Museum, and founded Singapore, the most important trading port in the East.


This lecture tells the story of Raffles, a scholar and polymath, looks at the art objects he collected, reveals the mystical temple in Java and its radiant carvings, and shows the architectural heritage of Singapore, inspired by his vision, and its revival today as innovative art galleries and museums.