Arts and Ethnology Centre, Luang Phrabang

1118
Arts and Ethnology Centre, Luang Phrabang
Arts and Ethnology Centre, Luang Phrabang

Arts and Ethnology Centre

Arts and Ethnology Centre is the only independent non-profit museum and resource centre in Lao PDR dedicated to the collection, preservation, and interpretation of the traditional arts and lifestyles of the country’s ethnic groups. Permanent exhibitions feature traditional textiles and clothing, jewellery, religious artefacts, handicraft tools, baskets, photography and household objects.

>>Ban Hat Khai in Laos

>>Tham Sang Triangle in Laos

Exhibition of Laotian’s traditional clothing
Exhibition of Laotian’s traditional clothing

The museum offers visitors a rare glimpse into the life of Laotian people giving a greater understanding to their richly diverse culture with quotes, photos and videos bringing the exhibits to life. It is small in size but packed with interesting and informative pieces which are organised to an international standard. The museum shop operates on a fair-trade basis by providing local craftsmen and women with an opportunity to sell their hand-made goods with a stock of around 500 products supporting a number of families across Laos.

The museum shop sells hand-made goods
The museum shop sells hand-made goods

There are over 400 exhibits documenting the life and times of 30 ethnic groups at the Arts and Ethnology Centre all supporting Laos’ varied cultural heritage. Special exhibitions at the museum are well worth a visit and often showcase ceremonies and rituals such as the recent “From Courtship to Kinship: Wedding Celebrations of Laos’ Ethnic Groups”. Displays at the Courtship to Kinship exhibit included the wedding crown of Kim Di Mun which was crafted from human hair and pure silver, superb documentary-style photography and detailed explanations of the customs and rituals added to the depth of this acclaimed exhibition.

>>Where to see in Laos

More information

Opening Hours: from Tuesday to Sunday at 09:00-18:00

Location: behind the Dara market at the bottom of Phou Si Hill at 335 Ban Khamyong in the centre of Luang Prabang

Remarks: The museum shop sells artisan handicrafts made by villagers and is also a great place to grab a taste of traditional ethnic minority dishes at Le Patio Café. Exhibit translations are in English, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish and are available free of charge.