History, memory, nation: Thai artists depict a country of complexity – picture feast

Six contemporary artists reflect on the complexity of modern Thailand and present an intricate picture to the outside world.

“Subjective Truth, Contemporary Art from Thailand”, opened at 10 Chancery Lane Gallery, Hong Kong, on 20 May 2013 and will be on view until 20 July 2013. Curated by Southeast Asia specialist Iola Lenzi, the show comprises video, photography, sculpture and installation.

Sutee Kunavichayanont, ‘The Class’, 2012, video installation, black board, chalk, LCD projector, benches, variable size. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Sutee Kunavichayanont, ‘The Class’, 2012, video installation, black board, chalk, LCD projector, benches, dimensions variable. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Subjective Truth, Contemporary Art from Thailand” at 10 Chancery Lane is one of a series of exhibitions that the gallery is presenting during the first edition of Art Basel Hong Kong (23 to 26 May 2013).

“Subjective Truth” artists

The six selected artists in the exhibition are:

Reflections on today’s Thailand

“Subjective Truth” includes artworks that reflect the current state of Thailand. According to the exhibition press release,

The country embodies paradox: for outsiders it represents all that is serenely Buddhist. But from inside, it is perceived by many Thais as politically, socially and even spiritually dysfunctional.

Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, Bangkok Tanks, 2006, DVD, colour with stereo sound, music: smallroom, duration 6 min. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Nawapol Thamrongrattanarit, ‘Bangkok Tanks’, 2006, DVD, colour with stereo sound, music, duration 6 min. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Prapat Jiwarangsan, ‘Dust Under Feet’, 2011, 3000 digital prints, magnifying glass, approx. 100 x 100 cm. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Prapat Jiwarangsan, ‘Dust Under Feet’, 2011, 3000 digital prints, magnifying glass, approx. 100 x 100 cm. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Prapat Jiwarangsan, ‘Dust Under Feet’, 2011, 3000 digital prints, magnifying glass, approx. 100 x 100 cm. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Prapat Jiwarangsan, ‘Dust Under Feet’, 2011, 3000 digital prints, magnifying glass, approx. 100 x 100 cm. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Manit Sriwanichpoom ‘Waiting for the King [Standing]’, 2006, black and white series of photographs, gelatin silver print, 50 x 49.5 cm x 14 photographs. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Manit Sriwanichpoom, ‘Waiting for the King [Standing]’, 2006, black and white series of photographs, gelatin silver print, 50 x 49.5 cm x 14 photographs. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

History, memory and nation

The show aims to explore wider notions of history, memory and nation, as Lenzi told ARTINFO,

The works presented in “Subjective Truth” use strong visuals and other playful devices to pull the viewer into a complex topic. This is conceptual art in Southeast Asian mode: art-as-conceptual-play grounded in life, artists exploiting iconography, audience participation, and aesthetics to drive home their socio-political concerns.

Sutee Kunavichayanont, ‘Remains-Fade Away’, 2013, pastel on canvas, diptych, 200 x 140 cm each. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Sutee Kunavichayanont, ‘Remains-Fade Away’, 2013, pastel on canvas, diptych, 200 x 140 cm each. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Tawatchai Puntusawasdi, ‘Pixelated Heaven’, 2013, hand-tooled, cut and welded galvanized sheet metal, 300 x 160 x 180 cm approx. (H x W x D). Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Gallery

Tawatchai Puntusawasdi, ‘Pixelated Heaven’, 2013, hand-tooled, cut and welded sheet metal, 300 x 160 x 180 cm approx.  Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Michael Shaowonasai, ‘King & Queen’ (King), 2013, lightboxes, approx 75 X 120 cm each. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Gallery

Michael Shaowonasai, ‘King’, from the installation ‘The Untouchables’, 2013, light box, 75 X 120 cm approx. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Michael Shaowonasai, ‘King & Queen’(Quees), 2013, lightboxes, approx 75 X 120 cm each. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Gallery

Michael Shaowonasai, ‘Queen’, from the installation ‘The Untouchables’, 2013, light box, 75 X 120 cm approx. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Michael Shaowanasai, ‘Self-Portrait with Double South Sea Pearl Earrings’, Triptych, 2013, c-print, 76 x 50.8 cm x 3 pieces. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Gallery

Michael Shaowanasai, ‘Self-Portrait with Double South Sea Pearl Earrings’, triptych,
2013, C-print, 76 x 50.8 cm x 3 pieces. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

Michael Shaowanasai, ‘Self-Portrait with Double South Sea Pearl Earrings’, Diptych 2013, c-print, 76 x 50.8 cm x 2 pieces. Image courtesy: 10 Chancery Lane Gallery

Michael Shaowanasai, ‘Self-Portrait with Double South Sea Pearl Earrings’, diptych, 2013, C-print, 76 x 50.8 cm x 2 pieces. Image courtesy 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

There will be a talk on the exhibition by curator Iola Lenzi and the participating artists on 26 May 2013, from 10am to 12pm, at 10 Chancery Lane Gallery.

JP/CN/CXMA/KN

Related Topics: Thai art, Hong Kong exhibitions, Iola Lenzi

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