AccScience Publishing / AC / Volume 2 / Issue 2 / DOI: 10.36922/ac.2373

Decoding decorative motifs: Visual perception and spatial understanding in Buddhist image houses

Ganga Rajinee Dissanayaka1*
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1 Samkathana Research Center and Asarchive, Faculty of Humanities, University of Kelaniya, Western Province, Dalugama, Kelaniya, Sri Lanka
Submitted: 5 December 2023 | Accepted: 18 March 2024 | Published: 27 May 2024
© 2024 by the Author(s). This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution -Noncommercial 4.0 International License (CC-by the license) ( )

This study aims to investigate the impact of designs, coupled with the main pictorial program, on the perceptions of individuals within the organizational and spatial framework of a Buddhist image house. The study seeks to understand the influence of these designs on both the overarching artistic theme and the individuals experiencing them while considering the diverse roles inherent in this setting. Consequently, it elaborates on three different roles within this context of the research inquiry regarding the application of different styles alongside the main story theme in a Buddhist image house. In addressing the research question concerning the rationale behind incorporating decorative motifs alongside the main thematic narrative in a Buddhist image house, this study delineates three roles: supportive, objective, and subjective. It explores how these decorative motifs in the main pictorial program shape the perceptions of individuals and their subsequent effects. Emphasizing the multifaceted roles assumed by decorative motifs, this research contributes insights into the diverse functions served by these elements. The study posits that such variations not only serve as guides to religious practices but also offer a means of expressing the elevated creative qualities inherent in Asian art through the utilization of motifs.

Buddhist image house
Decorative motifs
I would like to express my gratitude for the funding provided by the HETC (2012 – 2015) and AHEAD (2019 – 2023) projects, both of which are World Bank-funded initiatives. The University of Kelaniya in Sri Lanka has been a vital partner in supporting this endeavor. Project financial support for research has played a crucial role in the successful execution and accomplishment of our project goals.
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Conflict of interest
The author declares that she has no competing interests.
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Arts & Communication, Electronic ISSN: 2972-4090 Published by AccScience Publishing