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Handmade Chiang Mai launches at OP Place

Simon Farley of the British Council in Bangkok joins Chiang Mai British Council Centre Manager Ginny Rowlands at the launch of handmade chiangmai.

By Shana Kongmun
Handmade Chiang Mai is a collaborative effort between the British Council and the Chiang Mai Creative City Initiative as represented by the College of Arts, Media and Technology (CAMT), the Technology Development Center, Chiang Mai University and the Northern Handicrafts Manufacturers and Exporters Association (NOHMEX).

Handmade Chiang Mai was set in motion to promote the handicrafts in Chiang Mai and use the latest technologies to showcase them. The website showcases the crafts of the North to the world and encourages the development of the creative economy in the region. The project features crafts in furniture and decor, ceramics and textiles.

The exhibition, which opened at OP Place at Le Meridien on Wednesday, August 23, 2012 featured a unique interactive 3D display of the featured products as well as holographic images created by the team at Inition from the United Kingdom. Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul opened the event which also featured some of the products from NOHMEX and other contributors. The exhibition will be on until September 20. More information can be found at

Ceramics from contributors Lanna Art Collection, Lai Moo Hin and Nata Keta Leela Arrom were on display at OP Place.

The textiles of Studio Naenna and Adorn are featured in handmade chiangmai. Here Patricia Cheesman of Studio Naenna (far left) is joined by friends, CMCC member Martin Venzky-Stalling and her daughter Lamorna Cheesman (far right) of Adorn on Nimmanhaemin Soi 1.

Peter Tullen of Culture Label and Andy Millns of Intuition come from two of the U.K. firms involved with the British Council in the handmade chiang mai project. Culture Label provides a web based platform for handicrafts while Intuition was the driving force behind the unique holographic displays.

Simon Farley and Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul are joined by partners in the program at the opening ceremony at OP Place at Le Meridien.

Phuenthai Wild Charity night

PhuenThai members gather on stage at the start of the Gala charity night.

The Phuenthai German International organization, Thai sister organization of the German cultural, human rights and social organisation Thailandfreunde e.V. (Friends of Thailand) held its annual charity fund raiser Gala with tremendous success on Wednesday, August 15, 2012. Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul opened the evening and also presented awards at the event that was held at the Chiang Mai Night Safari.

A letter in German, English and Thai from the German ambassador H.E. Rolf Schulze was presented to each of the guests - as the event this year was held in honor of 150 years of Thai German Friendship.

Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul presents flowers to Dr. Dirk Weeber-Arayatumsopon to start the gala evening.

Dr. Dirk Weeber Arayatumsopon, Chairman of the German organisation announced that Princess Maja von Hohenzollern from Germany was the ambassador of the German organisation and that guest of honor M.R. Malinee Chakrabandhu had accepted to be ambassador of the Thai organisation representing the descendants of HRH King Mongkut, Rama IV.

A fashion show in latex from Planet Latex, catering by Horeca and FB Julio as well as music performed ladies from Lamphun kept the crowd entertained.

The Annual Phuenthai awards were handed out with Man of the Year going to Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul and Lifetime Award in Platinum for bi cultural relations which was presented on the 23rd of December 2011 to HRH Maha Chakri Sirindhorn.

The event raised over a 100,000 Baht for the Northern School for the Blind and the 48 Hansa HIV Ladies School Lamphun.

Event organizer, Wuttipong Arayatumsopon, the 34 year old president of the Thai organisation Phuenthai German International the four months of preparation, good friends and a perfect team made the evening a success. (All photos by Nopniwat Krailerg)

Dr. Sarawut Srisakun, CEO of the Chiang Mai Night Safari receives a bouquet from the Governor.

Award winners gather on stage.

Chiang Mai welcomes new Chinese Consul General

Lamphun Deputy Governor Chumporn Saengmanee (center) came up to Chiang Mai to greet the new Chinese Consul General. (Photo by Ronnakit Norkham)

By Shana Kongmun
The Chinese Consulate-General held a party at the Empress Hotel on Friday, August 24, 2012 to welcome the newest representative of the People’s Republic of China to Chiang Mai; new Consul-General Zhang Weicai. H.E. Zhang Weicai has come from the post of Minister Counseller and Deputy Chief of Mission for the Chinese Embassy in Ottawa, Canada.

Chinese Consul General Zhang Weicai raises his glass to lead a toast to HM the King and Chinese-Thai friendship. (Photo by Ronnakit Norkham)

Mr. Zhang said he was looking forward to working with local authorities as well as the members of the overseas Chinese community and the many Chinese students studying in Chiang Mai. He laughed that he and his wife are very much looking forward to the temperate climate of Chiang Mai.

Mr. Zhang spoke to the audience of the commitment of the Consulate in growing close ties between China and Chiang Mai and to bringing more awareness of the beauty and friendliness of Chiang Mai to the Chinese people. He then raised his glass in toast to Chiang Mai and HM the King.

Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul then took the stage to offer Mr. Zhang and his family a heartfelt welcome to Chiang Mai, noting that he hopes expects to be promoted soon and that he is sure he and successor will be able to work as closely as the Chiang Mai government and the Chinese Consulate have done in the past.

Chiang Mai is home to over 1,500 students studying here and more than 10,000 Chinese students studying around Thailand. Additionally there are about 30,000 Thai students studying in China and an estimated 600,000 students are studying Chinese in Thailand.

Chinese Consul General Zhang Weicai joins Mayor Tussanai Buranupakorn in joining Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul in a toast. (Photo by Ronnakit Norkham)

Scott Taylor and Shana Kongmun chat with Mayor Tussanai Buranupakorn at the start of the party. (Photo by Ronnakit Norkham)

H.E. Zhang Weicai and his wife (2nd and 3rd right) are joined by Chiang Mai Governor M.L. Panadda Diskul, (far right), U.S. Consul General Kenneth Foster (center) former Greek Ambassador to Thailand George Sioris and his wife Dararat (3rd left) and the new American Consul Bradford Karony at the party that was held at the Empress Hotel. (Photo by Ronnakit Norkham)

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]]

Handmade Chiang Mai launches at OP Place

Phuenthai Wild Charity night

Chiang Mai welcomes new Chinese Consul General