Inclusive and international: how Subhashok Arts Centre connects local art with global worldviews


In this photo essay, we showcase a diverse range of art works - paintings, installations and mixed media works - from the exhibition titled Bird Eye View.

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Bangkok, the ‘City of Life,’ is well known for its urban sprawl and tourism industry, but is now positioning itself as a hub for modern art as well. The Bangkok Art Biennale kicked off this year for the first time (see Part I and Part II of our photo essay), and a number of local galleries have been launched to spur the contemporary art movement.

Founded by art collector Subhashok Angsuvarnsiri in 2012, the Subhashok Arts Centre in Bangkok’s Sukhumvit district aims to connect the Thai contemporary arts scene to international organisations. The exhibitions are intended to bring art closer into everyday life, be inclusive of all communities, and build social support for art.

The current exhibition is titled Bird Eye View, and focuses on the need for diverse perspectives to tackle complex global issues. Consciously or unconsciously, everybody has roles of giver, receiver, creator and destroyer, according to curator Chol Janepraphaphan.

“Technology has made the world smaller, and what is global is now more accessible. The struggle for survival is universal, but we must also develop solutions to take care of the world together,” he adds.

The art works by four artists at the current exhibition span paintings, installations, and mixed media. The centre has an artist residency programme in Chiang Mai, and has successfully taken Thai artists to international art fairs.

Earlier exhibitions have featured the works of artists such as Kma Sirisamphan (Reality in Fantasy), Thonathorn Suppakijjumnong (Typeface), Kittisak Kaewduk (Coercion), and Ronnachai Kitisaksin (Through the Breakage).

Wittawat Tongkeaw has showcased political art through solo exhibitions such as Prelude. Other artists have focused on surreal sculpture and ceramics, and encourage audiences to derive their own interpretations.

“To give away everything would ruin the enjoyment of the work,” jokes Supasit Thammaprasert, the artist behind an exhibition appropriately titled Dreamy Land. Some patterns of the past keep repeating themselves in our world, despite technological advances, he observes.

Now what have you done today to explore new perspectives, and broaden and deepen your understanding of our complex world?

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