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BAB Artists in Collaboration with Famous Fashion Houses

BAB Artists in Collaboration with Famous Fashion Houses

Among the 75-plus artists exhibiting at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, there are some distinguished names who have collaborated with world renowned fashion houses. Others have managed to put themselves on the map by creating products that are their signatures.

/// Thailand ///
Story: Nawapat Dusdul, Singhanart Nakpongphun /// Photography: Rithirong Chanthongsuk, Soopakorn Srisakul, Singhanart Nakpongphun

Over the years, so many collaborations have taken place to the extent that they are blurring the lines between haute couture and visual art. It comes as no surprise that here and now the sky is the limit. When beautiful works of art have left the confines of gallery life and landed in the atelier of a fashion house, the results can be far-reaching. In this presentation, we at Living ASEAN use the symbol x to designate a collaboration. 

01 | Christian Dior x Lee Bul

THE LADY DIOR SEEN by Lee Bul | Photo courtesy of ©Lee Bul from Dior
THE LADY DIOR SEEN by Lee Bul | Photo courtesy of ©Lee Bul from Dior

54-year-old South Korean artist Lee Bul is widely known for her works in many artistic disciplines, among them sculpture and installation art. Driven by a passion for modern art and design, she lets her talent shine in everything she does. The artist regularly collaborates with the European luxury goods company Christian Dior. Some of the highlights of her contributions include Dior Lady Art #2, which came out in the fall of 2017. Interpreting design and manufacturing techniques in a different way, Lee Bul affixes pieces of plexiglass mirrors to the original Lady Dior handbag to imitate the appearance of a single sheet of broken glass. The new couture technique evokes memories of Lee Bul’s “Cella”, her display for the Miss Dior Exhibition at the Grand Palais Paris in 2013. Our editor for art and culture Singhanart Nakpongphun was there to see it and came away very impressed. As he put it, “Cella inspired a sense of peace in an unusual way. Same objects are reflected multiple times in multiple directions. I stood there motionless for quite some time.”

Lee Bul’s Cella for the Miss Dior Exhibition in 2013 | Photo courtesy of ©LEE BUL form Dior
Lee Bul’s Cella for the Miss Dior Exhibition in 2013 | Photo courtesy of ©LEE BUL form Dior

See also:

In this video clip, Lee Bul gives an interview about how she works. Every morning, the Seoul-born artist keeps a detailed log of her activities. It keeps track of the process of developing until she puts the finishing touches to her work of art.

Those interested in Lee Bul’s way of conveying ideas through art shouldn’t miss Diluvium, her architectural installation for the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018. The striking exhibit crafted of multiple metal frames wrapped in silver foil tapes is currently on view at the East Asiatic Building that’s well known for its old world charm.

Bangkok Biennale 2018
Diluvium, an architectural composition by Lee Bul | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

 

02 | Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama

 Louis Vuitton - Yayoi Kusama Collection | Photo courtesy of Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton – Yayoi Kusama Collection | Photo courtesy of Louis Vuitton

Mention polka dots, and the name Yayoi Kusama springs to mind. The Japanese legend was among the first artists to have collaborated with the French fashion house and luxury brand Louis Vuitton. She began working with the atelier of Louis Vuitton in 2012, the most visible result of which being the Louis Vuitton – Yayoi Kusama collection. At the time, bold yet playful polka dots artwork, also known as “Dots Infinity”, began appearing on Louis Vuitton’s Vernis handbags. It wasn’t long before other bestselling models followed suit, most notably Speedy and Neverfull monogram canvas series, not to mention shoes, wallets, scarves … you name it. Yayoi Kusama is also known for her work in store decoration and brand awareness ideas.

Flashback: Here’s a video clip from the fashion blog stylerumer recorded on the day Yayoi Kusama attended a product launch at Louis Vuitton on Fifth Avenue, New York back in 2012.

Handbags, shoes, and clothing aside, it’s time to appreciate the beauty of installation works by the “Queen of polka dots”. Her entries into the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, which include the Red Pumpkin with black polka dots, and the Silver Pumpkin with multiple color dots, are currently on view at Central World and Siam Paragon shopping malls.

“Red Pumpkin” with black polka dots, which is part of the “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” visual art collection, is on view at Siam Paragon (First floor, Fashion Gallery 3) | Photo courtesy of Anupong Chaisukkasem

 

“Silver Pumpkin” with a mosaic of multiple color dots, which is part of the “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” visual art collection, is on view at Siam Paragon (First floor, Fashion Gallery 3) | Photo courtesy of Anupong Chaisukkasem
“Silver Pumpkin” with a mosaic of multiple color dots, which is part of the “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” visual art collection, is on view at Siam Paragon (First floor, Fashion Gallery 3) | Photo courtesy of Anupong Chaisukkasem
Inflatable Pumpkins Balloons, an installation by Yayoi Kusama, is on show at Central World | Photo courtesy of Methee Samantong

03 | Prada x Elmgreen & Dragset

A visual art piece titled “Prada Marfa” | Photo courtesy of the Lyda Hill Texas Collection of Photographs in Carol M. Highsmith’s America Project, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.
A visual art piece titled “Prada Marfa” | Photo courtesy of the Lyda Hill Texas Collection of Photographs in Carol M. Highsmith’s America Project, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

The artist duo, Michael Elmgreen of Denmark and Ingar Dragset of Norway, are widely known for creating “Prada Marfa”, an installation featuring a small Prada store somewhere in the middle of a desert in Taxas. Despite it being located just 42 kilometers from the nearest airport, exotic travels take a good three hours to reach it. The crux of the matter is a strong message about capitalism and how it affects the way people think. The visual art piece is created with Prada support.

“Zero”, a sculptural installation by Elmgreen and Dragset | Photo courtesy of Rithirong Chanthongsuk
“Zero”, a sculptural installation by Elmgreen and Dragset | Photo courtesy of Rithirong Chanthongsuk

For the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Elmgreen and Dragset present “Zero”, an 8-meter-tall sculptural installation made to look like the circumference of a swimming pool set at right angles. The thought provoking artwork is on show in front of the East Asiatic Building on the Chao Phraya River for the duration of the festival.

 

04 | Marina Abramovic

The portrait of Marina Abramovic for “The Artist Is Present” exhibition as it appeared on the cover of a 2012 publication. The picture was taken during a 2010 live performance. I Photo by Marco Anelli
The portrait of Marina Abramovic for “The Artist Is Present” exhibition as it appeared on the cover of a 2012 publication. The picture was taken during a 2010 live performance. I Photo by Marco Anelli

A pioneer in contemporary art, Marina Abramovic is widely known for “The Artist Is Present”, an endurance performance that changes the way art sends a message to the active audience. Her first live performance exhibition debuted at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) New York in 2010. During the silent show, museum visitors took turns sitting across the table from Marina staring into her eyes for hours. The live performances took 736 hours and 30 minutes from start to finish. It was the focal point of a series of art exhibits designed to call attention to social issues.

Her iconic works gave the Italian fashion house Gucci an inspiration to host similar events as a means of promoting an exhibition at the Yuz Museum in Shanghai that runs until December 16, 2018. The luxury fashion brand presents its versions of “The Artist Is Present” curated by Maurizio Cattlean. In so doing, Gucci has installed gigantic art walls in the biggest cities across the world featuring the portrait of Marina Abramovic that was taken at the MoMA live performance in New York in 2010.

A reproduction of Marina Abramovic’s portrait as it appears in Gucci’s version of “The Artist Is Present” I Photo courtesy of Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli
A reproduction of Marina Abramovic’s portrait as it appears in Gucci’s version of “The Artist Is Present” I Photo courtesy of Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli

 

In Hong Kong, a painting of Marina Abramovic for a Gucci art wall promoting “The Artist Is Present” event I Photo taken by Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli I Courtesy of Gucci
In Hong Kong, a painting of Marina Abramovic for a Gucci art wall promoting “The Artist Is Present” event I Photo taken by Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli I Courtesy of Gucci
In Milan, a painting of Marina Abramovic for a Gucci art wall promoting “The Artist Is Present” event I Photo taken by Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli I Courtesy of Gucci
In London, a painting of Marina Abramovic for a Gucci art wall promoting “The Artist Is Present” event I Photo taken by Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli I Courtesy of Gucci
In London, a painting of Marina Abramovic for a Gucci art wall promoting “The Artist Is Present” event I Photo taken by Ronan Gallagher, inspired by the original taken by Marco Anelli I Courtesy of Gucci

Besides the big names mentioned above, there are some homegrown artists who have become involved in the fashion world. Jitsing Somboon, formerly creative director at the Thai clothing brand “Playhound, is exhibiting his work titled “Paths of Faith” as part of the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018. The artist uses live performance art as a means of telling stories about Thai life and religion. The focal point of his work is a collection of white overcoats with “Faith” in either Thai, English, or Chinese stenciled on their back. The exhibition is on view at the entrance to the Temple of the Reclining Buddha, Wat Phra Chetupon at Tha Tian. The overcoats are given for people to wear on top of other clothing as they enter an area dedicated to religious purposes in the temple interior.

Jitsing Somboon shows the benefits of an overcoat with pouches on either side that allow people to carry their shoes with them as they enter the temple interior. I Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
Visitors put on Jitsing Somboon overcoats with the word “Faith” stenciled on their back as they enter the temple interior. I Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
Visitors put on Jitsing Somboon overcoats with the word “Faith” stenciled on their back as they enter the temple interior. I Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

The show would be incomplete without a couple of cool T-shirts. The up-and-coming artist Komkrit Tepthian also debuts a print T-shirt collection as part of his entry into the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018. The white short-sleeved casual top features simple drawings of his Giant Twins installation art stenciled on its front. The image tells stories of long-established friendship in a humorous way. Here’s the link to the artist’s fan page if you want one: Komkrit Tepthian : Artist

Giant Twins T-shirts by artist Komkrit Tepthian | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul
Giant Twins T-shirts by artist Komkrit Tepthian | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul
Giant Twins T-shirts by artist Komkrit Tepthian | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul

Whether you’re interested in the arts, fashion, or design, there are plenty of inspiring shows awaiting your visit. The Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 is going on now until next February 3. Featuring more than 200 masterpieces by international and homegrown artists, the inaugural art festival is being held at 20 different locations throughout the capital city. This time you don’t have to travel far to appreciate the beauty and the power of art. It’s the opportunity you can’t afford to miss. Art lovers. mark your calendar!

The Underlying Attributes of “Thai-ness” at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

The Underlying Attributes of “Thai-ness” at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

Ask anyone in the street a simple question about Thai-ness. “What’s the first thing that comes to your mind?” And you may get something like traffic jams for an answer. It will come as no surprise. Everywhere you look, the streets are wedged solid with the traffic gridlock especially during rush hours.

/// Thailand ///
Story: Nawapat Dusdul /// Photography: Rithirong Chanthongsuk, Soopakorn Srisakul, Singhanart Nakpongphun

From a different point of view, you may get something positive for an answer, something like beautiful temples, the marvels of ancient architecture, or the land of colorful taxis. But Thai-ness isn’t about people’s perceptions of anyone or anything in particular. It’s a million memories that constitute a distinctive national identity. Good or bad, the underlying attributes of Thai-ness are hidden in all things we do. They range from little things like the flower garlands used in the worship of the Buddha and dolls in full traditional dance regalia, to spectacular scenery including temples and palaces, national monuments and colorful nightlife. All things considered, the perceptions of the quality of being Thai can differ greatly from one person to the next, and it’s open to interpretation. That’s where art comes into play as a medium of expression that in a subtle way explains, reframes, and conveys an understanding of what it means to be Thai.

The contemporary art festival “Bangkok Art Biennale 2018” is doing exactly that. 75 artists from Thailand and abroad are exhibiting more than 200 works at some 20 venues throughout the capital city from now until 4 February 2019. For many homegrown artists, it’s a golden opportunity to express their ideas, passions, and commitments through various creative arts, ranging from installations and live performances to paintings and sculptures. It’s inevitable that their perceptions of the underlying attributes of Thai-ness is hidden in the works of art they put on display. And it’s entirely up to you to interpret them. We at LivingASEAN.com are proud to bring you some of the masterpieces created your compatriots.

Something about Thai-ness in home goods, décor and accessories

The Spiritual Spaceship 2018 by Thai artist Torlarp Larpjaroensook currently on view at BACC | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul
The Spiritual Spaceship 2018 by Thai artist Torlarp Larpjaroensook currently on view at BACC | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul

We have grown accustomed to seeing glass-faced armoires crafted of teakwood as part of our childhood experience. Equally familiar are pieces of architecture and a few ceramic vases that look very Thai to us. Over time, these home goods and décor items have changed hands as they get passed on from generation to generation or sold on the local marketplace. Now they can be found at temples. The flowers vases are widely used in the worship of the Buddha and merit making ceremonies across the country. Artist Torlarp Larpjaroensook, an Ayutthaya native, now lives in Chiang Mai. He’s no stranger to traditional art and craft, and he knows exactly what to do with them. His latest masterpiece is the representation of a spacecraft that he creates using old armoires, home goods and accessories that he found lying around unused at the home of a relative. He calls his objet trouvé installation “Spiritual Spaceship”. We call it the power of imagination.

The installation that measures 485 x 815 x 349 centimeters consists of found objects, among them an old armoire, a few vases, iron and copper implements, a spade, computer screens, electric lamps and fragments of various items. Together, they constitute a spacecraft model that he calls “Spiritual Spaceship 2018”. The artist is passionate about spatial relationships and interactions between works of art and exhibition viewers. His works illustrate how even unexciting materials can be modified and eventually come to be appreciated as art. Especially in “Spiritual Spaceship 2018”, there’s something about being Thai in the obsolete items that the artist uses as a medium of expression. In a nutshell, it’s a marriage between old objects and ultramodern architectural design. Who would have thought the final outcome would be a spacecraft with Thai-ness elements on it?

Bangkok Art Biennale 2018
Basket Tower, an installation by Choi Jeong Hwa on view at BACC | Photo courtesy of Soopakorn Srisakul

One of the magnets for art lovers, Basket Tower is an installation by Choi Jeong Hwa, a big name in South Korea’s contemporary art scene. The soaring sculpture is made of hundreds of brightly colored baskets in various shapes and sizes that Choi single-handedly picked from the marketplace. A versatile artist with many rewards to his name, Choi has authoritative knowledge in effective use of space. His past works include sculptures, installations, fashion and graphic designs. Choi gets most of his inspirations from undistinguished, even recycled materials that he finds in daily living and turns them into amazing works of art. Interestingly, there’s something in the colorful Basket Tower that bespeaks Thai-ness. The brilliant color combinations appear to be sending a message about life being fun, which coincides the quality of being Thai. The sculpture that stands as tall as a five-story building is on display at the Bangkok Art and Culture Center.

Something about Thai-ness in Cultural History

A force to be reckoned with in Thailand’s mixed media art scene, Pannapan Yodmanee was among a few Thai artists to ever win the 11th Benesse Prize that was part of the Singapore Biennale 2016. For her, the fun part of it was the opportunity to compete with fellow artists from 19 countries from across Asia. Apart from the award money, she had the privilege of exhibiting her works at the Benesse Art Site in Naoshima, dubbed Japan’s island of art.

Sediments of Migration by Pannapan Yodmanee
Sediments of Migration by Pannapan Yodmanee | Photo courtesy of Rithirong Chanthongsuk
Sediments of Migration, an installation by Pannapan Yodmanee | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
Sediments of Migration, an installation by Pannapan Yodmanee | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

Pannapan’s entry into the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 is a transportable installation titled “Sediments of Migration”. The sculptural exhibition consists of six miniature mountains, hermit figures in yoga poses, and a collection of ballast stones used in stabilizing the cargo ships of ancient times. Inspired by mural paintings found throughout the temple ground of Wat Phra Chetupon, it tells stories of the long established trade and cultural relations between the people of old Siam and their Chinese counterparts.

The artist said in an interview, “Through this installation, I want to communicate to the audience cultural harmony and the assimilation that exists between two peoples from entirely different backgrounds. It turns out to be quite a challenge because the miniature mountain landscapes must be kept intact, while media of expression are added to the scene to produce a pleasing visual effect.” Pannapan was able to do exactly that. Some exhibition viewers have said it wasn’t easy to tell the difference between old and new parts that made up the installation art.

Likewise, it’s the dream of the up-and-coming artist Komkrit Tepthian to feature a page of Thai history and religion in the early Ratanakosin Period. His entry into the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 is a sculptural installation consisting of two three-meter-tall Giant Twins. It features the likeness of a sculptural Chinese warrior and a giant gatekeeper from classical mythology.

On a related topic, Chinese avant-garde artist Huang Yong Ping presents Dragon Boat, a 16-meter-long sculptural installation depicting a journey by the people who migrated from China to settle in Thailand in the past century. Huang is founder of the Xiamen Dada art movement.

Something about Thai-ness and the Environment 

An installation titled “2562++” by Patipat Chaiwitesh | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
An installation titled “2562++” by Patipat Chaiwitesh | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
An installation titled “2562++” by Patipat Chaiwitesh | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
An installation titled “2562++” by Patipat Chaiwitesh | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

Patipat Chaiwitesh is a new generation artist with a unique way of expressing ideas about events and their impacts on society. He has created works in a number of genres from sculpture to installation to textile art. For the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, his installation with a futuristic name, “2562++”, has excited the curiosity of many viewers. That’s exactly the intention. The artist sees his work both as a laboratory and means to promote an awareness of the effects of change in the natural surroundings. The message is being conveyed in the artistic representations of fish, birds, and crustaceans that appear to have undergone transformation as the result of environmental degradation by humans. The artist’s work is on display at the East Asiatic Building.

An installation titled "Pyramid Shape Sculpture 2018” by Andrew Sthal | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
An installation titled “Pyramid Shape Sculpture 2018” by Andrew Sthal | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

On a related topic, British artist Andrew Stahl presents “Pyramid Shape Sculpture 2018”, a two-meter-tall installation crafted of fragments of toys and found objects that he plucked from the Chao Phraya River. His work raises concern over water quality and the health of rivers in Thailand. Professor Stahl is chair of the Painting Department at the UCL Slade School of Fine Arts. His pyramid-shaped sculpture stands covered in multiple layers of warm-color paint spread over the surfaces that he uses to draw attention to hot issues concerning water pollution problems. Stahl has used his painting skill to chronicle a journey through time and unfamiliar places, where culture and language differ greatly from his own. He specifically made reference to the physical environment of Bangkok from an artist’s perspective and the enormous energy that made it a vibrant destination.  Stahl said in an interview: “A journey on the Chao Phraya evokes memories of the time when the first Europeans discovered old Siam and came into the company of the people whose life depended on this river. Professor Stahl’s work is on view at the East Asiatic Building.

An installation titled "Pyramid Shape Sculpture 2018” by Andrew Sthal | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun
An installation titled “Pyramid Shape Sculpture 2018” by Andrew Sthal | Photo courtesy of Singhanart Nakpongphun

The exhibitions listed above are part of a wider art festival that’s going on right now and will run until 3 February 2019. The Bangkok Art Biennale is a major confluence of more than 200 beautiful works by 75 leading artists from 34 countries across the globe. The exhibits are on show at 20 different locations scattered throughout the capital city.

Plan Your Trip: Ways to View BAB at Landmark Spots along the Chao Phraya River

Plan Your Trip: Ways to View BAB at Landmark Spots along the Chao Phraya River

Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, (BAB) is an art fair which will transform Bangkok into a city for art lovers. Famous artists from many corners of the world have brought their works here to be shown at 20 landmark sites.

/// THAILAND ///
Story: Favforward.com /// Photography: Rithirong Chanthongsuk, Methee Samantong, Anupong Chaisukkasem, Singhanart Nakpongphun, Soopakorn Srisakul, Media Hub, Courtesy of the Artist

The show spreads over two zones: 1) the Chao Phraya riverside and 2) the heart of the city. Shows in the urban zone are easily accessible by public transport such as BTS or MRT. The Chao Phraya riverside zone is also easy to get to, but for comfortable travel, easy on the physical body and with no worry about getting lost, we’ve prepared a guide – including parking suggestions – for getting around to see that great art down by the riverside.

(Download here)

30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018
30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018

BTS Saphan Taksin, your starting point

BTS Saphan Taksin Station is the perfect connecting point between urban and riverside zones, so if going by BTS or other public transport you’ll want to make this your destination for catching the Chao Phraya Express Boat. Arriving on BTS, take Exit 2 and it’s a quick walk to the pier where the Chao Phraya Express Boats, which you’ll recognize by their orange flags, dock. Fare is 15 baht per person.

Going by private car? There’s a parking lot close by the BTS Saphan Taksin, next to Wat Yannawa at the end of Charoen Krung Soi 52, a very convenient walk to the Express Boat. From 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. the charge is 60 baht per day; every hour after 5 p.m. costs an additional 10 baht.

The East Asia Building
  1. The East Asia Building

We recommend taking the Chao Phraya Express Boat from Taksin Station and getting off at Oriental Pier (Tha Oriental). Just a short walk from there brings you to the beautiful Renaissance Revival architecture of that venerable old building.

It’s less convenient to drive your car here, as the East Asia Building has no parking lot. Leaving the car at the Soi Charoenkrung 52 lot and going by boat is a much better idea.

Zero by Elmgreen and Dragset / Venue: The East Asiatic Company Building
Diluvium by Lee Bul / Venue: East Asiatic Company Building
  1. Mandarin Oriental Hotel

This is quite close to the first destination, so if your plan is to admire the fantastic art work at the East Asia Building, you should stop by the Oriental as well.

Taking the Chao Phraya Express Boat, get off at the Oriental Pier just as for the East Asia Building. The Mandarin Oriental also has its own boats that can be hired for pickup and drop-off.

Parking? The Oriental’s parking garage is free for guests only, so those using it for convenient access to the art show have to pay the Hotel’s standard service charge. Remember, it has limited space, and so might be full.

  1. O.P Place

An old trade center and a fixture in the Phra Nakhon locality since 1908, O.P Place is one more BAB art venue that’s accessible by Chao Phraya Express Boat  and the Oriental Pier. You’ll find it by walking just 270 meters from Tha Oriental, and, of course, it’s convenient to the BAB exhibitions at the Mandarin Oriental and the East Asia building.

O.P. Place has a parking lot which is free for three hours with a parking ticket stamped by one of the shops, services, or restaurants in the trade center. Without a stamp it is 200 baht per hour.

  1. The Peninsula Bangkok

With the Express Boat, again you get off at the Oriental Pier. This time, since the Peninsula Hotel is on the opposite bank, you should take the free boat service between the Mandarin Oriental and the Peninsula.

For those of our readers who must take your own cars, the Peninsula Hotel provides free parking for art lovers. Simply tell the parking official that you’ve come for the BAB art fair, and there’s no charge. We’re keeping this a bit on the Q.T., because the BAB fair lasts a full 4 months and we anticipate that this special service may change before long.

Bangkok Art Biennale 2018
Turtle Religion by Krit Ngamsom / Venue: Khao Mo, Wat Prayurawongsawas Woraviharn
  1. Wat Prayurawongsawas Warawihan

This is one of the three temple locations chosen for BAB art exhibitions: take the Express Boat to the Memorial Bridge/Saphan Phut Pier and it’s right across the bridge, a short pleasant walk with some great river views.

For the automobile-bound, Wat Prayurawongsawas Warawihan has its own parking lot, free for pilgrims and worshippers. Others need to pay 20 baht per hour, but we have no information for our readers on parking there specifically for Bangkok Art Biennale viewing.

Very close by, on the Chao Phraya riverside, there is also the Municipal Sanitation Officials’ parking lot, or on Thesakit Soi 1, where there’s free public parking but it’s rather limited, so a bit chancy. Cars may also be left at Wat Kallayanamitr Woramahawiharan (Wat Kanlayanamit): to get to BAB from there you’ll have to walk through the Kudeejeen District.

Another choice would be to drop the car at the Pak Klong Market parking lot behind Yodpiman River Walk. There’s an automatic system here which can hold as many as 360 cars. Service charge for 4 hours is 40 baht, and it’s open 24 hours. From there you’ll have to cut through to the Chao Phraya and cross Memorial Bridge to reach Wat Prayurawongsawas Warawihan. It’s a bit of a hike, but definitely a secure and easy place to leave your car.

Bangkok Art Biennale 2018
What will we leave behind? by Nino Sarabutra / Venue: Circular Walkway, Main Stupa, Wat Prayurawongsawas Woraviharn
  1. Phra Chetupon Vimol Mongkolam (Wat Pho)

Coming from Wat Prayurawongsawas Warawihan you’ll have to cross back over and catch the Chao Phraya Express Boat at either Memorial Bridge/Saphan Phut or Yodpiman Pier, and go to the Wat Arun/Tha Tian Pier, where there is also a boat crossing to the next destination of Wat Arun.

To go straight to Wat Pho by private car, there’s the “Soi by Wat Pho” parking lot at the Chetuphon Street fork, which charges 20 baht per hour, but there’s so little space there you won’t be able to count on it, so make sure you have a backup plan.

Nearby is also the Tha Maharaj Pier parking lot, but this also has limited space and is always full. There’s sometimes also parking at the Navy Club,  if there is no event scheduled there.

Wat Arun Ratchawararam Ratchawaramahawihan
  1. Wat Arun Ratchawararam Ratchawaramahawihan

When you’ve viewed the art work at Wat Pho to your heart’s content, take the boat back across the river to Wat Arun.

Driving in on Arun Amarin Road, it’s pretty hard to find parking by Wat Arun. It’s common to park on the side of the soi by the Temple (Soi Wang Derm), but we don’t recommend it because 1) space is limited, and 2) it’s not very safe. Our suggestion is to leave the car elsewhere, e.g. back at the Pak Klong Market, Soi by Wat Pho, or the Navy Club, and just take the Chao Phraya Express Boat and/or a boat that crosses to the other side.

Bangkok Art Biennale 2018
Giant Twins by Komkrit Tepthian / Venue: In Front of Khao Mo, Wat Arun or the Temple of Dawn
BOT
BOT Learning Center
  1. Bank of Thailand Learning Center

Going by Chao Phraya Express Boat, we recommend getting off at Thewet Pier.

If bringing your car here, just use the Bank of Thailand Learning Center parking lot. The Learning Center has free parking for 4 hours with a stamped parking ticket. If you’re staying longer, or don’t get your ticket stamped, it’s 20 baht per hour.

Dragon Boat by Huang Yong Ping / Venue: BOT Learning Center

This is just a rough plan for readers interested in visiting the Chao Phraya River Zone exhibitions of Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, an international festival of contemporary art held from October 19, 2018 until February 3, 2019 at 20 important Bangkok locations.

 

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30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018

30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018

Bangkok has come alive with all the spectaculars happening all around us. The Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 is on right now with more than 200 works of art on display at 20 venues throughout the city. For the record, 75 artists from 34 countries are exhibiting at this very moment. Naturally, you are spoilt for choice because there are so many good shows to go to. If you’re still not sure where to start, Living ASEAN has put together a checklist of 30 amazing pieces that every art lover must see. Don’t miss out!

/// THAILAND ///
Story: Singhanart Nakpongphun /// Photography: Rithirong Chanthongsuk, Methee Samantong, Anupong Chaisukkasem, Singhanart Nakpongphun, Soopakorn Srisakul, Media Hub, Courtesy of the Artist

01 | Basket Tower by Choi Jeong Hwa 
Venue: BACC, Floors 1-5

Rising high into the air, a tower of brightly colored baskets is lovingly crafted by South Korean artist Choi Jeong Hwa. The soaring sculpture is currently on show at BACC. His inspiration is encapsulated in his motto, “Your heart is my art.” More works of art by the happy and lively South Korean can be seen at Park Nai Lert Heritage Home and department stores in Siam Square, Chidlom, and Rajaprasong.

02 | Rekayasa Genetika (REGEN) by Heri Dono 
Venue: BACC Floor 7

An installation featuring puppets on strings portrays the human race as the outcome of mutation. What is perceived as a breed of mechanical humans is the work of Indonesian artist Heri Dono. The models controlled by strings are crafted of fiberglass, wood, electronic gadgets, and electric fans. The exhibit gets its inspiration from Indonesia’s shadow puppetry known as Wayang. Find out what message it tries to communicate at BACC. Other shows like it can be seen at the East Asiatique Building and the Peninsula Hotel Bangkok.

03 | Tape Bangkok 2018  by Numen For Use Design Collective
Venue: BACC Floor 7

An installation by a group of German artists is in the form of a tunnel fastened with clear adhesive tapes. The “Numen For Use Design Collective” has exhibited at major art scenes from Frankfurt to Paris to Ohio. In Bangkok, the Tape Tunnel is being staged at BACC.

04 | A Possible Island? by Marina Abramović Institute (MAI)
Venue: BACC Floor 8

A durational performance by Greek artist Yiannis Pappas
A performance art exhibit by Thavisak Moolasawat of Thailand
Myanmar artist Lin Htet is live at a durational performance.

An endurance art exhibition titled “A Possible Island?” is happening on the 8th Floor of the Bangkok Art and Culture Center (BACC). A series of performance art shows are presented by 8 students from Marina Abramović Institute. Among them, Myanmar artist Lin Htet puts himself in a barbed wire cage and stands still in protest against human rights abuse and the suffering of a Muslim minority in Myanmar. In an interview with Baan Lae Suan Magazine, the artist says that the stateless Rohingya people are in his thoughts and prayers. While there, take the time to experience “The Method”, a performance and immaterial art show going on now until November 11, 2018 from Tuesday thru Sunday, 12 noon to 20.00 hours.

05 | Shelter from the Stars by Marc Schmitz
Venue: BACC

 

Measuring 5 meters wide, Shelter from the Stars is a large sculpture by Marc Schmitz. The German artist and curator is known for his interest in the openness of space which, he thinks, provides a different kind of experience that cannot be found in the city. Open spaces provide environmental benefits and shelter from confusion and disturbances happening all around us. The exhibit sends a message that people have got to stop hurting one another. Life doesn’t have to be that way.



06 | “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” (Red) by Yayoi Kusama
Venue: Siam Paragon, First floor, Fashion Gallery 3

07 | “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” (Silver) by Yayoi Kusama
Venue: Siam Paragon, First floor, Fashion Gallery 3

08 | Inflatable Pumpkin Balloons
Venue: Central World

The exhibits listed above are the works of Yayoi Kusama, Japan’s most prominent contemporary artist. The red pumpkin with black polka dots and the silver fruit with multiple colors are part of a collection titled “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins”. Sometimes called “The Princess of Polka Dots”, Kusama works mainly in sculpture and installation and is widely known for her obsession with endless dots, nets, and mirrored space. The 89-year-old artist continues to create amazing works of art, most notably installations.

09 | “Mamuang” for BAB 2018
Venues: Siam Square 1, Siam Paragon, Central World, and the EmQuartier

“Mamuang” for BAB 2018 by Wisut Ponnimit
“Mamuang” for BAB 2018 by Wisut Ponnimit

Wisut Ponnimit is the creator of “Miss Mamuang” and her four-legged friend “Manao”. Ten versions of the fictitious animation characters are debuting at the Bangkok Art Biennale. Animation fans, don’t miss out!

10 | “Your Dog” by Yoshitomo Nara
Venue: BAB Box @ One Bangkok

The Japanese artist is well known for his paintings and sculptures of children and animals, the most famous of whom being a childlike character who appears sweet yet sinister. Nara rose to fame during the 1990s Japanese pop art movement. His works of art have been exhibited worldwide. For the Bangkok Art Biennale, Nara is debuting “Your Dog”, a 4.5-meter-tall canine character made of aluminum currently on show at BAB Box @ One Bangkok.

Army of Thai Artists in Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

Army of Thai Artists in Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

Besides the seven Thai artists featured in this article, we have to tell you two more have now shown up! Wisut Ponnimit and Kawita Vatanajyankur have also joined this veritable army of not-to-be-missed Thai artists at Bangkok Art Biennale 2018. It goes all the way to February 3, 2019, so who’s coming along with us?

/// Thailand ///
Story: Singhanart Nakpongphun /// Photography: Nutthawat Songsang, Singhanart Nakpongphun, Rithirong Chanthongsuk

  1. Montien Boonma (1953-2000)
Montien Boonma
Photography: Manit Sriwanichpoom

Ajarn (teacher) Montien is a legendary artist whose contributions to Thai contemporary art is nearly unparalleled, consistently mixing Thai and Western artistic concepts to express Thailand’s character in a distinctly modern way. He utilized common materials found in upcountry provincial Thailand to express “Thainess” in a way which does not fit into a preconfigured pattern, not everything neatly joined in the center, a new concept in that time.

Montien received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in painting from the Faculty of Painting, Sculpture, and Visual Arts from Silpakorn University, following that with graduate study in France at École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts and the Université de Paris VIII. The 1990s saw him doing prolific work in  installation art, mixed media, and sculpture, reflecting his thoughts about nature, society, and industrial advances amid rapid economic and societal development. At this time his wife became ill, and his works began to turn towards framing fundamental questions of Buddhist philosophy: meditations on birth, living, and dying.

After his wife’s death, Ajarn Montien traveled more extensively abroad, showing his work and immersed in his art, until he, too became ill, with cancer. Somehow even illness didn’t hold his creative energy back, as he worked almost until the day of his death at the tragically young age of 48 years.

Zodiac Houses by Montien Boonma
Zodiac Houses by Montien Boonma

Montien’s works have been shown in many countries, including France and the United States. At the 51st Venice Biennale (2006) in Italy he exhibited a piece which has returned for Bangkok Art Biennale 2018: “Zodiac House” (The House of Star Signs).” This is made up of 6 metal sculptures representing the upper sections of Catholic cathedrals, which he designed in Stuttgart, Germany while his body was ravaged with of pain. The Zodiac House set will be on display at Wat Prayoonwongsawat Worawihan.

  1. Tawatchai Puntusawasdi

Tawatchai Puntusawasdi

A devoted follower of Montien Boonma and himself a master sculptor, Tawatchai is widely known for complex shapes created through intricate fine calculations, constructed with elaborate technical skill and fired by tremendous talent. Each of his works has a remarkable shape that plays with the observer’s lines of vision. The volume and size of Tawachai’s works are likely to challenge viewer with the many philosophical questions they bring to mind. Tawachai’s work has received world-class prizes such as the Honor Prize at the 1st Biennial Sculpture Exhibition in Mexico, The Pollock Krasner Foundation Award from the USA, and the Grand Prize for Sculpture at Japan’s Osaka Triennale. He has exhibited at Biennale Art Fairs in Sydney, Jakarta, Venice, and now here he is at Bangkok Art Biennale 2018! You can see an elegant wooden sculpture of his in a magnificent setting at Wat Pho: see the design sketch detail below.

  1. Sanitas Pradittasanee

Sanitas Pradittasanee

Sanitas began her career as a landscape architect. After graduating from the Faculty of Architecture at Chulalongkorn University and worked in landscape architecture with Colin K. Okashimo & Associates Singapore for four years before deciding to follow her heart and going for a master’s degree in Fine Arts at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London. With a solid foundation in landscape architecture and a true love of installation art, she returned home to Thailand to set up her own establishment, Sanitas Studio. Not long afterwards, she began receiving one international award after another. The work “Khao Moh” (Mythical Escapism) is a large representation of a mountain tiled with rectangular pieces of glass. She received a lot of attention for this work, receiving a “Commended with Merit” award at the 2015 Emerging Architecture Awards. She was also chosen to participate in Aesthetica Art Prize 2015 as one of a hundred longlisted artists from 60 countries worldwide, with her name entered in the Aesthetica Art Prize Anthology. Another work is “Equilibrium,” where porcelain dolls decorated with indigo designs are blown up and down by wind. This work was invited to be shown on Songdo beach at Pusan, South Korea at Sea Art Festival 2013.

From the World Inside / Across the Universe by Sanitas Pradittasnee
From the World Inside / Across the Universe by Sanitas Pradittasnee

Here at Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Sanitas has recreated “Khao Moh,” but in a new version and with site-specific installation. The new Khao Moh can be seen at Wat Arun.

  1. Torlarp Larpjaroensook

Torlarp Larpjaroensook

Born and raised on a houseboat in Ayutthaya Province, Torlarp finished studies at the College of Fine Arts there before continuing on for his bachelor’s degree at Chiang Mai University Faculty of Fine Arts. Torlarp mixes it up, using paintings, sculpture, installation art, and design art to explore possibilities in relationships between art and society. In 2008 he created “Gallery Seescape” (Alternative Art Space) in Chiang Mai, and 2009 brought “3147966,” a moving gallery built from a modified vehicle, where he invites international artists to come display their work by driving it around to various communities.

Just as with other Thai artists participants in Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Torlarp’s work has been featured at international exhibitions. One of these is “Bookshelf,” which 8Q Singapore Art Museum retained in its own collection. Torlarp was selected by Koganecho Bazaar Yokohama in Japan as artist in residence, and his work was shown at the Yokohama Art Festival. This year in Bangkok, Torlarp’s dazzling work “Spiritual Space Ship” is on display. Its theme is travel to the past and future, and is constructed of ordinary, everyday materials.

  1. Patipat Chaiwitesh

Patipat Chaiwitesh

Patipat’s designs rely on his constant observations of changes in culture, society, and the environment. After a bachelor’s from the Department of Visual Arts at Chulalongkorn University, he received awards at venues such as Nitthassakan Ploy Saeng (Let There Be Light Exhibition) at the 2010 TCDC (Thailand Creative & Design Center) and the 2011 Tokyo Designer Week fair in Japan. In 2012 he won the Award for Excellence in Product Design at the Hoegaarden “Different by Nature” Design Contest. Design work he did jointly with a Thai furniture brand was shown at the Maison & Object fair in France and at Germany’s IF Design Award show.

In order to gain more experience abroad, Patipat went on to study at the École supérieure des beaux-arts TALM in Angers, France, and produced many works that made it to the final round of such competitions as the cover contest for 50th Mark Magazine, the clothing pattern “Dare to Dream” Design Awards, and the famous website Designboom. He also had works entered in Exposition Art Capital 2015 at Grand Palais in France and Sweden’s 2016 Stockholm Furniture Faire 2016. By 2016, Patipat was clearly an artist of the new generation, with a unique characteristic outlook towards his surroundings and expert in numerous fields: sculpture, painting, installation art, and textile art, and exhibits all over Thailand.

At Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 fairgoers are invited to the East Asiatic Building, into a lab room of the future where Patipat shows us sculptures of animals foraging along the river’s edge: fish, birds, and shrimp, all with appearance and behavior much modified due to the effects humans will have had on the environment.

  1. Dujdao Vadhanapakorn

Dujdao Vadhanapakorn

An artist whose skills in acting, directing, and dancing developed over 16 years, Dujdao Vadhanapakorn is a member of a “physical theater” drama group that focuses on societal issues. Her expertise in visual design brings her to use materials emphasizing communication. She calls her acting “Experiential Performance,” where the substance of work is in the audience experience.

Dujdao’s work began to take on individual identity after she received a master’s in  Dance Movement Therapy from Goldsmiths, University of London, in 2009. Having studied and worked in motion-based psychotherapy, Dujdao was interested in subtleties in human thought and awareness. She makes close connections between humans and the problems of society, drawing on psychological and psychotherapeutic theories to create her own individualistic work. This is especially clear in works from the period 2013- 2017: “(In)sensitivity,” shown in the B-Floor Room, “Secret Keeper,” at the Bangkok Art and Culture Center, and “Blissfully Blind,” which you can see at Bangkok CityCity Gallery. All three of these speak to aspects of human coexistence: awareness of one’s own feelings in relation to those of others, interpersonal trust in safe spaces, and agreement among those with different perceptions. All these are based on an experience shared with the viewers.

At this event Dujdao showcases the art of body movement, which communicates the inspiration behind all her works shown at the  Bangkok Art Biennale 2018.

  1. Pannaphan Yodmanee

Pannaphan YodmaneePannaphan, a mixed-media artist and burning light of the new generation, has received many international awards, debuting with awards of excellence in consecutive years for the project “Jittrakam Bualuang” (Sacred Lotus Painting). Her mixed media works combine painting and installation art with a daring individual talent that plays on societal conflict and satire with a keenness that has brought her rapid domestic and international acclaim. In 2015 her project “Thailand Eyes” was shown at Saatchi Gallery in London, and at only 29 years of age the next year she was one of only a few Thai artists ever so honored as she won the 11th Benesse Prize, emerging from competition with 63 artists from 19 Southeast and South Asian countries at the Singapore Biennale 2016. This resulted in an invitation to exhibit at the Benesse Art Site on Naoshima Island in Japan.

At Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 her work is shown at Khao Mor in Wat Pho. Pannaphan told us that her works generally dealing with religious topics are shown in museums, but this time she is extremely excited about actually showing at a sacred site.

These and many other art works both Thai and foreign are now being shown all over Bangkok, as Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 writes another important page in the annals of art history.

 

30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018
30 Works of Art You Can’t Miss at BAB 2018

6 Famous Artists You Can’t Miss at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

6 Famous Artists You Can’t Miss at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018

The final countdown has begun. Every second brings you closer to a world-class contemporary art exhibition featuring 75 celebrated artists from across the globe. The Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 will begin on October 19 and continue until February 3, 2019. Happiness is only real when shared. So, mark your calendar!

Story: Singhanart Nakpongphun /// Photographs: (Wisut Ponnimit) Sitthisak Namkham /// Photo credit: Yayoi Kusama, courtesy of Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo /// Photos: courtesy of participating artists

The three-month period will see 20 famous landmarks around the capital transform into thriving art scenes, among them Wat Phra Chetupon, a.k.a. the Temple of the Reclining Buddha (Wat Pho for short), the Bangkok Art and Cultural Center, and One Bangkok, a mega development project that’s shaping the future of the city. See also gallery details at the end.

Here are the first six artists that you can’t miss.

  1. MARINA ABRAMOVIĆ

World renowned as a pioneer in performance art, Abramović uses her own body as medium in exploring the physical and mental limits of her being. She is best known for her groundbreaking durational works titled “The Artist is Present” hosted by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City. The artist gave live performances from March to May 2010, during which she sat in silence at the table throughout the run of the show for a total of 736 hours. All day Abramović would not respond, but museum visitors were willing to wait in line for a chance to sit across from her for as long as they wanted.

The Bangkok Art Biennale 2018 offers the opportunity to experience the works of Abramović at two separate events. First, the exhibition titled “Standing Structures” provides a glimpse into the world of communication through silence. It takes place at the mega development project One Bangkok, located on Rama IV Road. And from October 8 to November 12, 2018 only, a team from the Marina Abramović Institute (MAI) presents the other event called “Method,” which is an exercise about being present in both time and space.

The exhibition “Standing Structures” explores interactive communication in silence.
“Method” is an exercise presented by a team of artists from the Marina Abramović Institute (MAI).

 

  1. YAYOI KUSAMA

89-year-old Japanese contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama is passionate about polka dots. She has taken a great interest in the design since she was little. The Queen of Polka Dots, as she is affectionately called, also works in sculpture, painting, and installation. Her devotion to lively bright color patterns has influenced generation after generation of contemporary artists. No doubt one of the most famous artists in Japan, Kusama has won critical acclaim worldwide, including the Best Gallery Show awarded by the International Confederation of Art Critics in Belgium and several experimental cinema awards given by the Government of France. Her eye-catching design has attracted the attention of many, including the high fashion brand Louis Vuitton. As may be expected, the products of collaborative design with Kusama sold out fast.

It’s hard not to be romantic about Kusama’s beautiful works of art during the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, among them the famous polka dots pumpkins that will be on view at Central World and Siam Paragon. Equally impressive is a Mini Cooper that has been pimped up Kusama style. The car is on show at One Bangkok.

“Inflatable Pumpkins Balloons” installations transform the perception of a space.
A mosaic of vivacious colors adorns a silver sculpture that’s part of a collection called “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins”.
Black polka dots on red, part of the “I Carry on Living with the Pumpkins” collection.
  1. CHOI JEONG HWA  

Korean artist-cum-designer Choi Jeong Hwa has authoritative skill in effective us of space with many awards to his name. He is expert at building outdoor installations and turning unthinkable, day-to-day materials into stunning works of art. In 2008, he designed a large-scale installation that completely surrounded the Seoul Olympic Stadium with 1.7 million recycled and found objects. He also created a big plastic tree that pulsated with regular throbbing sensation as if it were breathing. Choi said that he had no definition to offer for his artworks. They were up to the viewers to interpret based on their different life experiences. His inspiration is encapsulated in one short sentence. “Your heart is my art.”

The Fruit Tree, a large-scale sculpture at Starfield Library inside COEX Department Store, Seoul, South Korea.

 

Works by the artist from the Land of the Morning Calm will be on show at the Bangkok Art and Cultural Center as well as Nai Lert Park Heritage Home and several department stores in Siam Square, Chidlom, and Rajprasong. Choi is to debut a collection of sculptures made from familiar materials that will put a smile on your face. Bring the smartphone and camera so you have something to share via social media.

“The Joker Crown” from Choi’s Happy Happy Project collection
“Love Me Pig 1” from the “Happy Happy Project
“The Inflatable Black Robot” from the Happy Happy Project
“The Inflatable Pink Flower”
“The Stupa” from the Happy Happy Project
“Happy Happy Project: Plastic Shotguns”
“Alchemy” an installation from the “Happy Happy Project

 

  1. HUANG YONG PING

One of the most famous Chinese avant-garde artists, Huang Yong Ping founded a movement called “Xiamen Dada”, which combined ideas from Dadaism (an art movement in early-20th-century Europe) with the influence of Zen Buddhism in the Eastern Hemisphere. The Chinese-born, French contemporary artist made his world debut at the 48th Venice Biennale in 1999. Since then, he has participated in many art exhibitions, from the Red Brick Art Museum in China to Ludwig Museum in Germany to Grand Palais in France.

For the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Huang will present “Dragon Boat”, a large sculptural work that tells stories of Chinese migration in times past. Portraying a rowboat of ancient China, the 16-meter artwork stands 4.2 meters tall. It will be on show at the Bank of Thailand Learning Center.

“Dragon Boat” a major attraction at the Bank of Thailand Learning Center
Sculptures with reduced mass details will be on display at Wat Pho.
  1. KAWITA VATANAJYANKUR

A rising star in Thailand’s art scene, Kawita Vatanajyankur uses video art to raise questions about issues concerning women’s rights. The artist puts herself through various situations as a means of demonstrating women’s roles in society. Her works portray a woman as part of machines, household chores, and industrial processes. The result is a collection of artworks in vivacious colors that have become her distinct identity. Kawita has exhibited at several art festivals around the world, among them the “Islands in the Stream”, which was part of the Venice Biennale 2018. The exhibition tour also took her to the Saatchi Gallery in London, and later the same year at the Thailand Eyes event at home.

For the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Kawita’s amazing works of art are on view at Central World, the EmQuartier Mall, the Peninsula Hotel, the Theatre of Indulgence, and the Asiatique Building. She sends a strong message: “It’s not easy being a woman.”

The “Shuttle and Performing Textiles” exhibition portrays a woman as shuttle carrying the weft thread between the warps on a loom.
A spinning wheel for making yarn and textile products.
The “Shuttle and Performing Textiles” exhibition portrays a woman as shuttle carrying the weft thread between the warps on a loom.
A piece portraying women’s roles in textile dying.

 

  1. WISUT PONNIMIT

The cartoonist who designed the cover for the 42nd Anniversary Edition of Baan Lae Suan Magazine (September 2018), Wisut Ponnimit is the creator of a series of animation art featuring adorable fictitious characters Miss Mamuang and her four-legged friend Manao.

For the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018, Wisut will present ten versions of animation art at Central World, the EmQuartier Mall, and the mega property project One Bangkok. If your love is art and animation, don’t miss out on it.

Miss Mamuang, the lovable character by animation artist Wusit Ponnimit, will debut at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018.
Miss Mamuang, the lovable character by animation artist Wusit Ponnimit, will debut at the Bangkok Art Biennale 2018.  

This has been about six artists out of a total of 75 who exhibit at the Bangkok Art Biennale happening from October 19, 2018 to February 3, 2019. There are more stories on interesting people and events to come. Follow us at baanlaesuan.com and livingasean.com.

            The art exhibitions are being held at 20 locations across the capital.

Click here to download HD map.

 

The Making of the “Super Ung-Lo,” Ratchaburi’s Fuel-Efficient Cook Stove

The Making of the “Super Ung-Lo,” Ratchaburi’s Fuel-Efficient Cook Stove

The old-fashioned cook stove known as “Ung-Lo” has long been a manifestation of traditional knowledge of the people of Thailand. It’s fair to say that the charcoal stove can make food taste and smell better than can gas-fired cooking ranges. Precisely, nothing can replicate the natural smoky flavor of char. Nowadays, although the ubiquitous influence of gas-fired cooking ranges is felt by everybody, there’s always a demand for the charcoal stove. That said, we believe there’s at least one “Ung-Lo” in practically every household to meet every cooking need, whether it be barbecuing low and slow or cooking with high heat.

/// THAILAND///
Story: Trairat Songpao /// Photography: Kosol Paipoei

Ruam Sukhawattago is owner of “Gold Stoves,” an old manufacturing factory located in Ratchaburi Province. He kindly takes a break from work to show us around and share his experience. No doubt it’s an opportunity to observe traditional knowledge at work and see how the cloning process has evolved over time to fit modern circumstances. In the process, Ruam succeeds in crafting a fuel-efficient cook stove that he calls the “Super Ung-Lo.” The product is made from materials sourced directly from the community, such as clay and rice husk ash. In all, the handcrafted cook stove takes ten days from start to finish.

Super Ung-Lo Super Ung-Lo Super Ung-Lo

How It’s Made

First of all, clay goes through a curing process to become liquefied overnight. Then the soft clay is mixed with soil and rice husk ash. The ratio of soil to ash is 2:1. Work the moistened clay mix into paste with the hands until it’s thick and malleable enough to be molded to its final shape.

Let it cure for 12 hours before attaching three cooking pot supports to the inside wall of the fire chamber. The support points should be raised slightly higher than the mouth of a stove. Rub off the rough edges on the clay surface to give it a nice finish. Cut an opening in the lower part of the wall to make an air inlet. Then, let stand for five days before putting it in a kiln, where the clay stove becomes hardened by heat. 

Next is the making of a perforated clay brick or grill that separates the fire box from the ash chamber below. The lower room doubles as air inlet and ash removal port. The round grill prevents the fire from falling into the space underneath. Traditionally, a total of 61 holes are made while the brick is soft and easy to cut. The grill is fired at the same time as is the stove body.

From the kiln, the hardened earthenware is placed inside a metal casing for protection. The void space is filled with rice husk ash for heat insulation. Finally, it’s time to seal the top circumference with cement mix and install the perforated brick to complete the process.

Super Ung-Lo Super Ung-Lo

The “Super Ung-Lo” cook stove is designed to save fuel in line with the policy of the Department of Alternative Energy Development and Efficiency. It differs from traditional cook stoves in that:

  1. Shape: It’s perfectly shaped to store thermal energy in material by raising its temperatures.
  2. Stove top circumference: The stove mouth is capable of supporting 9 sizes of cooking pots (sizes 16-32)
  3. Support points: The three support points are raised above the top circumference only slightly to minimize heat loss.
  4. Fire chamber: Relatively speaking, its fire chamber is smaller than that of a traditional cook stove, which translates into less fuel being used.
  5. Grill: The perforated clay brick is made thicker for durability. Its efficiency comes from a forceful current of air that is pulled through many smaller holes using convection.

Super Ung-Lo Super Ung-Lo

Touring the factory, we come across so many cook stoves to the extent it gets us thinking about the future of the age-old industry. Will this occupation continue to have pride of place in modern circumstances? Interestingly enough, Ruam replies:

“At one time, the US Embassy invited me to join my counterparts from Laos and Vietnam for a meeting on Ung-Lo making in Vientiane. I represented Thailand in that event. At the time, many versions of cook stoves were discussed and compared in a bid to identify a design that produced the highest heat, had the least impact on the environment, and the most energy efficient. The Thai Ung-Lo proved to be the case. It started a fire in the least amount of time. By comparison, it produced the highest heat with water reaching the boiling point very quickly. In fact, the kettle boiled twice while the Vietnamese stove had only just started a fire.

“It turned out that theirs was a biofuel stove, which produced a lot of smoke. Experiments showed the Thai stove was made to a high quality standard. I couldn’t help wondering why the Americans were so interested in the Ung-Lo. Their answer was that 20 years from now, humans would have turned around to using traditional cook stoves due to natural gas being used up. Oils derived from petroleum would have been depleted less than 50 years from now, unlike wood which is a renewable product. So, now I understand.”

Super Ung-Lo

We came away feeling good knowing we have formed friendships and understanding with each other. It made us happy to go by the saying, “Whatever you do in life, do it for love.” Ruam Sukhawatago no doubt was of the same opinion.

For a chance to visit the “Gold Stoves” factory, or get yourself something good like a “Super Ung-Lo,” call 08-7977-8677 for information.

Source : www.baanlaesuan.com

 

Fascinating Works by Cambodian Artists

Fascinating Works by Cambodian Artists

Cambodia may not be the most vibrant art scene in the world. The country that’s known for the most iconic temple Angkor Wat is fast making its presence felt as an artistic destination. Inspired by a new sense of confidence, three Cambodian talents have risen to fame around the region and across the globe. Let’s meet them.

///CAMBODIA ///

Photo: crow collection

Sopheap Pich

Born in Battambang, Cambodia, Sopheap Pich moved with his family in 1984 to the United States, where he later graduated from the Art Institute of Chicago. He returned to Phnom Penh in 2002, and has been based there since. Pich is known for creating works of art using local methods and materials, such as bamboo, rattan, and earth pigments gathered from across the country. He also made sculptures inspired by bodily organs, vegetal forms, and abstract geometric structures. Among his masterpieces are “Reliefs” in 2013, “Compound” in 2011, and “Morning Glory” in 2011.

Sopheap has had exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris), the Guggenheim Museum (New York), the Singapore Biennial (Singapore) and the Venice Biennale 2017 (Italy).

photo: crow collection
Photo: www.sopheap-pich.com
Photo: designed for living

Link: http://sopheap-pich.com/work/

http://crowcollection.org/exhibition/hidden-nature-sopheap-pich/

http://www.designedforliving.com/editorial/finds/weaving-wonderment/

 


 

Visoth Kakvei

An illustrator who mixes abstract patterns, fantasy imagines, and doodle art in his own style, Visoth Kakvei created extraordinary art by simple black pen and presented it online as if it were everyday art from his sketch book. Nowadays, he has more than 850,000 followers on Instargram. Watching him draw is really an amazing experience.

 

 

Link: https://www.instagram.com/visothkakvei/


 

Lisa Mam

The first female street artist of Cambodia, Lisa Mam is one of the hottest emerging artists in Phnom Penh. She and her associate, Peap Tarr, presented Khmer patterns and ornaments in graffiti style. Lisa got her inspirations from ancient arts of the Angkor period, including ornaments at Angkor temple, the dancing Apsaras, and goddess sculptures. Her works have been on view not only at Boeung Kak and hotels in Phnom Penh, but also at the art gallery Lotus Arts de Vivre, the discotheque Bed Supperclub, the hip hotel Cacha, and the premier shopping center Siam Discovery in Bangkok. The Cambodian artist duo also produced the street clothing brand “REPTILE”.

Lisa Mam’s work at Starbucks flagship store in Phnom Penh

 

Link: https://www.facebook.com/LisaMamArt/

 

ALIVE by Alex Face

ALIVE by Alex Face

Alex Face is a remarkable Thai street artist. Now, he is revealing the perspective of his art in his latest exhibition, “ALIVE”.

/// Thailand ///
Story: Wuthikorn Suthiapa /// Rewrite – Translate: Osatee Ularangkoon ///  Photos: NathawutPengkamphoo, Wuthikorn Suthiapa

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Street art has achieved recognition on the Thai art scene over the past decade. The leading artist in this genre is Patcharapol Tangruen, also known as Alex Face. He created the three-eyed baby in fluffy bunny outfit character that appeared on the walls across Bangkok, Jakarta, Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, London, Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Berlin.

While he was an art student, his friends and professors didn’t understand why he kept spraying in public space, and thought it was ridiculous. But Alex Face disagreed. “Street painting is a kind of expression and could draw many audiences,” he said. “If it’s hard for people to engage with art, we should take it to engage with people instead.”

With that idea in mind, Alex Face hit the street with his colorful graffiti and the signature character that was inspired by his daughter. He also met fellow street artists from around the world, got the invitations to work abroad, and became an internationally-renowned street artist.

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“I studied art, so I’m interested in all kinds of art,” Alex Face answered when asked about his style of work. “Not only did I graffiti, I’ve also painted, printed and sculpted. I like it all. It depends on which techniques could be compatible with my concepts.” He also said that he set up “ALIVE”, his most recent event, to show his art experience from childhood till now.

“You will see what skills I had practiced, and encounter different kinds of works of art that you’ve never seen before,” he assured.

Alex Face’s ALIVE is taking place at Bangkok CityCity Gallery until February 19, 2017. For more information please visit www. bangkokcitycity.com.

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Sirimongkol: A Spiritual Art Exhibition By Pomme Chan

Sirimongkol: A Spiritual Art Exhibition By Pomme Chan

Bid farewell to 2016 and ring in the New Year with Sirimongkol, an exhibition of works by celebrated illustrator Pomme Chan. The artist got her inspirations from the twelve signs of the Zodiac, which in the Chinese belief system are thought to have profound influences on us humans. The event is on from now until February 12, 2107 at the Jam Factory.

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The spiritual art exhibition is appropriately named “Sirimongkol,” which is Thai for good omens or positive energies believed to foretell the future. Pomme Chan’s masterpieces depict the twelve signs representing the constellations that form the imaginary belt of the heavens. To make it easy to appreciate, the exhibition comes in four parts.

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The first part consists of illustrated works on canvas depicting the 12 animal signs of the Chinese Zodiac. Each sign comes accompanied by floral and botanical ornaments that speak to basic character, preferences, strengths, and weaknesses of individuals.

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The second part is quite a striking collection. Using hand-drawn techniques on paper, the artist lets red and gold play a prominent role in her contemporary interpretation of the Zodiac signs. Sharp geometric shapes blends well with curves and brush strokes from Chinese calligraphy and other symbols of wealth, success, luck, and power.

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The third part is three-dimensional showcasing a futuristic spirit house. The 3D shrine is crafted of clear acrylic sheets illuminated by LED lighting, a collaborative effort between Pomme Chan and interior designer Pruitsatorn Sakulthai. Finally, the fourth part comprises illustrated works printed on 10 porcelain plates and mounted on frames to focus on the meaning of “Sirimongkol” as we know it. May 2017 bring happiness and prosperity to you all.

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Exhibition period: Now – February 12, 2017.
Location: The Jam Factory

For more information, visit www.facebook.com/thejamfactorybangkok

About the artist

Pomme Chan is a Thai illustrator based in London. Her feminine style and detailed illustrated works are recognized worldwide. She has been working with various leading brands and magazines, including Marc Jacobs, Nike, Adidas, Volkswagens, and The New York Times. She is moving back in Thailand, where she has a studio of her own.

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