Vol. III No. 5 - Saturday January 31 - February 6 2004
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Black & White exhibition at The House gallery

Wild and Wonderful

Black & White exhibition at The House gallery

Tirawat Sangphueng’s Rustic photographs

Marion Vogt

The House Gallery had the opening of its first photographic exhibition by Tirawat Sangphueng, a well known Chiang Mai artist. Tirawat has a sharp eye and named his latest series ‘Rustic’. All photos were taken in a small village in the north and the natural light which he used for taking them brings out that special mood which Tirawat has become well known for bringing out in his pictures.

He catches normal situations or hidden effects which everybody sees, but does not notice. The photographs are all taken in that traditional ‘art’ medium of Black and White photography, though each one in the ‘rustic’ series has a totally different character. Photos, which remind the viewer to open our eyes and walk through life more attentive and alert.

The almost completely white interior, white frames and the visitors in black and white clothes (a coincidence?) add another special B&W touch to the exhibition.

Hans B. Christensen, managing director of The House, Gallery, Restaurant and Ginger Shop receiving a print from Tirawat after declaring the exhibition open.

Tirawat Sangphueng (middle) between Rooj Changtrakul (left), the interior designer of the Tamarind Hotel who used many of Tirawat’s photos for decor and a friend.


Wild and Wonderful

Jim Messenger

The beginning of Feb, end of Jan, dawn of the Wood Monkey Year, saw the unveiling of an arresting showing of paintings that bodes well for the artistic output of 2004.

Jittiwut Sriyang’as work is on display at Umong Silppadhamma.

Quick, here we to soi Wat Oumong to that ‘oh so tricky to find spot: Umong Silppadhamma (Sub Soi 11, Soi Wat Oumong, off Suthep Rd... look for the small red sign on your right. www.umong.org), which I have spoken about before. This is the venue of the not perfect, not pretty ‘come by as you must’ place, where laid back is the key.

The show is wonderful, marvelous, profane and arrogant, filled with Thai values, laughing at itself, wondering why all along. The artist is called Jittiwut Sriyang. He’s a graduate of CMU Fine Arts Department and that’s all I know. But the show’s the thing, 15 or so large paintings, monochromatic backgrounds, repeated pairings of the same man and woman, in different modes, moods and gestures, a baby included, different phases of a relationship.

One of the paintings of Jittiwut Sriyang.

Most arresting, perhaps, of a pregnant naked woman, buzz-saw style hair, hovering in space, like a cloud; with the man on the side, two heads, one masking the other. Sounds terrible doesn’t it? But it’s really fine, and fresh and vivid, full of the wonder of life and dread, the passion and experience, the poise and petulance of young lovers going growing together and raising a family.

See the woman in Lanna dress, umbrella encumbered, surreal dream-like images; horse, sun, elephant, float by. Very French. Then, the man, head like an elephant, trunk shooting stars. And this baby, such a baby. What a head, it’s the heads in fact that most arrest in this artist’s works, as if the whole of the relationship was encased in the heads. Well, for most people it is this way after all.

What a show. On till the end of Feb. The gallery is open Monday to Sat 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Worth a look.



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