The Sukothai style is the first Thai style that has developed in an area of Thailand not under foreign occupation. The Sukothai period only lasted for about 200 years from the 13th to the 15th century and reached its peak in the 14th century. The style faded away in the 16th century (?Post Sukothai?) and then disappeared. The material used for Buddha images was almost exclusively bronze.
The Sukothai Buddha images are the most desirable and most expensive collector?s items of Thai Art. Especially among Thai people they are considered the most beautiful as well, because of their well defined bodies and facial expressions that suggest the Buddha has already transcended halfway to Nirvana.
Any Sukothai Buddha image is an outstanding worthy collector?s item, but among the Sukothai images, the rarest and most desirable (because it is uniquely Sukothai) are the walking Buddha images. Most sitting images come in the ?Calling the Earth for Witness? pose.
Sukothai Buddha images come from 3 different schools and have distinctly different features in each school.
Sukothai Sukothai school or pure Sukothai style with well defined almost athletic bodies and the typical face attributed to Sukothai in most publications.
Sukothai Khampheng Phet school with less defined bodies and the typical Khampheng Phet face
Sukothai Pitsanulok school, similar to Khampheng Phet but with slightly different facial features.
Refer to the Buddha Gallery page for an outstanding example of each school.
The prices for Sukothai Buddha images in good condition have taken off already. A good example easily costs 3 times what you would pay for a comparable Ayutthaya piece and 5 times what you would pay for a comparable Lanna or Lao. But then ? nothing compares to a Sukothai really.