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Arts - Entertainment & It

City of Angels

Juxtaposing life in Los Angeles with life in Bangkok, the photographer managed to catch the similarities and differences.

In a series of stunning digital photographs, freelance photographer Curtis McElhinney draws impressionistic parallels between Bangkok and Los Angeles. The exhibition, supported by the U.S. Department of State’s Visual Arts Initiative and the Thai-U.S. Creative partnership, will run until July 24 at Central Airport Plaza Mall’s Northern Village on the second floor.

“City of Angels” reveals the artist’s admiration for both Bangkok and Los Angeles and aims to reflect similarities between distant societies. The Tourism Authority of Thailand, which will sponsor the exhibit in Los Angeles in November 2011, has bestowed Mr. McElhinney the “Best Amazing Thailand – Amazing Value” award for a video he produced about Thailand.

The photographer was joined by Todd Bate-Poxon of the U.S. Consulate General in Chiang Mai, Head of the northern Tourism Authority of Thailand Chalermsak Suranant, Consul of India Arvind Kumar, and British Honorary Consul Ben Svasti Thomson at the grand opening.

Todd Bate-Poxon joins Curtis McElhinney and Chalermsak Suranant of the TAT to open the event.

Amber Hedges-Ferry joins in a discussion over the huge photos on display at Central Airport Plaza.

Curtis McElhinney’s photos of Bangkok and Los Angeles are on display at the Northern Village in Central Airport Plaza until July 24,

Colours Galore! A New Exhibition at Gallery 116

By Jai-Pee

For those art lovers who like striking colour, straightforward yet very appealing landscapes and animal portraits, then the newly opened exhibition at Gallery 116 is just for you. Local artist Dr Kanthorn Thamprasot has presented a beautiful series of landscapes featuring rural scenes, mountains and valleys plus some flower arrangements, all of which are instantly eye-catching and appealing. Using a wide range of vivid colours and imaginative scenarios, Kanthorn’s work is enchanting and bright. Bold brushstrokes and rich textures take us into that kind of world where the sun always shines. The twenty or so canvasses, all beautifully mounted, show a maturity of style which owes much to other Thai artists as well as to some of the great masters. All these paintings are for sale at very reasonable prices, with 10% of any sales being donated by the artist to the Classical Music Group of Chiang Mai University of which Dr Kanthorn is a former alumni and president.

To complement these landscapes, and in total contrast are a series of portraits of cats and dogs by three artists, the renowned Thong Udonpon, and Kaiwut Panyawai with Sudaporn Teja, the latter two being the feline friends! Thong’s dog portraits are amazing – they capture so realistically expressions of bewilderment, suspicion, adoration and caution – these are largely paintings of street dogs so that their expressions do not cover the full range that might apply to a household pet, except for one – Khun Thong Daeng, a wonderful portrait of His Majesty’s dog which is strikingly different in a posture of trust yet alertness. The cat portraits are playful, delicate and equally attractive. All are for sale at very reasonable prices and these or the larger landscapes would make a wonderful addition to any room in the home. Thong will donate 10% of any of his sales to the local charity ‘Care for Dogs’. The Gallery is about 300 metres from the Nawarat Bridge on the right-hand-side of Charoen Meuang Road heading towards the railway station and the exhibition will be there until September 16th with opening times from 10.00am until 6.00pm (closed Monday).

Inside the exhibition is an invitation to join a very special summer art class in Branik, Slovenia. A full week’s course of technique and instruction will be run by internationally renowned local Slovenian artist Tjasa Iris. The dates are from September 7th until 14th at a bargain cost of 990 euros which includes all accommodation, breakfasts and sandwich lunches, 3 local village dinners, tuition fees and materials. There will be a maximum of 8 participants. Branik is a few kilometers from the magnificent Dalmation coast and just 15 kilometres from the Italian border and the villa is in the centre of one of the most famous local wine growing areas – plenty of stunning views to fire the imagination! For more details visit the website at: or contact the owner of the Gallery 116, Mrs Wanthip Nimmenhaeminda or her manageress Methika on 086 870 0153; 053 302 111.

Lifescapes Film Festival calls for submissions

The South East Asian Institute of Global Studies (SEAIGS) at Payap University is proud to announce the second Lifescapes Southeast Asian Film Festival to be held 2-5 February 2012!

A lifescape is an expanse – life, livelihood, and reality – that can be seen in a single view. The Lifescapes Southeast Asian Film Festival screens contemporary films – documentary, docu-drama, or dramatized – to showcase thoughtful work with a social conscience. The festival hopes to raise awareness of film culture and filmmakers of mainland Southeast Asia who make meaningful social commentary with their work – showing the beautiful without flinching from grim reality.

Selected films will explore regional issues and topics within mainland Southeast Asia: Cambodia, Lao, Burma/Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. The program will be interactive, offering directors, producers, media representatives, NGO representatives, and audience members the opportunity to join together in post-screening Q&A sessions, panel discussions, and evening social functions throughout the program.

Lifescapes is an all-inclusive experience and we are looking for inspiring films for its second run. Wherever you may be based, if you have a film focused on one of the 5 mainland SE Asian countries, we encourage your submission. In addition, this year we hope to include more work from filmmakers of the Mekong Sub-Region and highly encourage local submissions.

For more information, visit the Lifescapes website. The deadline for submissions is 31 October 2011.For inquiries, please email [email protected] Feel free to distribute this announcement. We look forward to receiving and viewing your submissions!

Senses exhibition opening

Artist Vichian Boonmeemak in front of one of his bright and colorful pieces at Sangdee Gallery.

By Shana Kongmun
The exhibition titled "Senses" by Vichian Boonmeemak opened at Sangdee Gallery on Sirimangkalajarn Soi 5 on Wednesday, July 13, 2011. Khun Vichian is a well known Thai artist who has been exhibiting since 1986. His unique colorful paintings express how people interpret life through their senses. The bright colors is, as he says, how sees life.
The well attended evening saw former mayor Duentemduang na Chiengmai attend as well as receive a painting as a gift from the artist. The exhibition runs until August 13, 2011.

One of the pieces on display.

Former Mayor Duentemduang na Chiengmai (center) receives a painting as a gift from the artist with Pim Kemasingki of CityLife (right).

A Memorable Event for Srinehru School

By Jai-Pee

Ajaan Santi held his 5th charity concert in aid of the Srinehru School, Doi Suthep earlier in the year. He has recently made the long journey to this mountain school lying between Doi Suthep and the Phu Phing Palace. The grand total raised in March and April was a staggering 26,000 baht and with this money, the Director of the school, Khun Sompong Wichaisingh received one set of Grade-A Angkalung in 24 pieces, 105 recorders and 16 melodicas.

The Angkalung is an Indonesian instrument that has been adapted and changed slightly for use in Thailand. Now every child in this primary school will have access to live music-making, a wonderful way for the youngsters to learn and appreciate the joys of music. Ajaan Santi, his hard-working staff and the performers who rehearsed and performed in March are to be congratulated on this fine effort. Thanks must also go to all those who supported this venture and gave so generously of their time and money.

Chiang Mai Screening Program

22-31 July 2011

Vista Kadsuankaew

Friday, 22 July
14.00 Erratum 1h 35m Poland
15.45 Above the Street Below the Water 1h 40m Denmark
17.35 Run If You Can 1h 52m Germany
19.40 The Last Pulcinella 1h.29m Italy

Saturday, 23 July
11.00 Kooky 1h 35m Czech Republic
12.45 With Friend Like These 1h 40m Belgium
14.35 Assault on the Santa Maria 1h 45m Portugal
16.30 The Escape 1h 54m Denmark
18.40 When We Leave 1h 59m Germany

Sunday, 24 July
11.00 The Magic Tree 1h 30m Poland
12.40 The 1000 Euros Generation 1h 41m Italy
14.35 Camino 2h 18m Spain
17.05 The Paper Will Be Blue 1h 35m Romania
18.40 The Wedding Photographer 1h 48m Sweden

Monday, 25 July
15.00 With Friends Like These 1h 40m Belgium
16.50 The Hell of ‘63 1h 48m Netherlands
18.50 Bank Ban 1h 56m Hungary

Tuesday, 26 July
15.00 Weekend With My Mother 1h 27m Romania
16.40 An Ordinary Execution 1h 45m France
18.35 Camino 2h 18m Spain

Wednesday, 27 July
15.00 Dust 1h 26m Luxembourg
16.40 The 1000 Euros Generation 1h 41m Italy
18.35 The Escape 1h 54m Denmark

Thursday, 28 July
14.00 The Paper Will Be Blue 1h 35m Romania
15.45 Erratum 1h 35m Poland
17.30 The Last Pulcinella 1h 29m Italy
19.10 Run If You Can 1h 40m Germany

Friday, 29 July
14.00 Above the Street Below the Water 1h 40m Denmark
15.50 When We Leave 1h 59 m Germany
17.20 Celda 211 1h 53m Spain
19.25 Weekend With My Mother 1h 27m Romania

Saturday, 30 July
13.00 The Magic Tree 1h 30m Poland
14.40 The Hell of '63 1h 48m Netherlands
16.40 Exit Through the Giftshop 1h 26m U.K.
18.15 Forbidden Fruit 1h 40m Finland
20.05 Dust 1h 26m Luxembourg

Sunday. 31 July
13.00 Kooky 1h 35m Czech Republic
14.45 Bank Ban 1h 56m Hungary
16.15 Celda 211 1h 53m Spain
18.20 An Ordinary Execution 1h 45m France
Screenings are subject to change without prior notice

Special Preview Recitals

Tasana Nagavajara on violin and Pornphan Banternghansa on piano will present previews of their very prestigious recital to be held in Leipzig, Germany.

By Jai-Pee

Courtesy of Santi’s School of Music and the Friends of Music Making in Chiang Mai, there will be three preview recitals of an exceptional nature. On Friday 22nd July, Saturday 23rd July and Sunday 24th July two of Thailand’s finest musicians - Tasana Nagavajara on violin and Pornphan Banternghansa on piano will present previews of their very prestigious recital to be held a week later in the former home of composer Felix Mendelssohn in Leipzig, Germany. This recital in Germany is a great honour for these very distinguished Thai musicians whose talents have obviously reached far distant shores – but equally, here in Chiang Mai we are also most honoured that they have agreed to give us a preview of their German presentation.

No stranger to Thailand's classical music enthusiasts, Tasana Nagavajara was a former Concert Master of the Bangkok Symphony Orchestra under Hikotaro Yazaki for 10 seasons. He has appeared as soloist with major orchestras in Thailand. He also gives numerous recitals, performs in chamber music ensembles and is presently Concert Master of the Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music Orchestra. He studied music at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Switzerland, the Vorarlberg Conservatory in Austria and at the University of Oregon, U.S.A. At that time, Tasana toured extensively with the Camerata Lysy Gstaad, under the direction of Lord Yehudi Menuhin, in most major concert halls in European cities, the U.S., Canada and South America. Tasana is currently the Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Music at Silpakorn University, Bangkok where he is also a respected teacher.

Pianist Pornphan Banternghansa has been the recipient of many prestigious musical awards, including the Second Prize at the Centre for the Arts at Mizner Park’s Scholarship Competition in Boca Raton, Florida, USA, as well as Winner at the Salzburg College’s summer program piano competition in Austria. Pornphan has participated in numerous music festivals including the Salzburg College Summer Program, the Chautauqua Music Festival and the Aspen Music Festival in the USA. She was also selected as the first ever pianist from Thailand to participate in the prestigious Verbier Academy in Switzerland receiving a scholarship from the late HRH Princess Galayani Vadhana. Pornphan gained a Bachelor’s Degree and now holds a Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Piano Performance and Literature from the famous Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York State, where she studied with Professor Rebecca Penneys. Pornphan is currently a member of the piano faculty at Silpakorn University, Bangkok, Thailand.

Naturally these fine artists have chosen to play one of Mendelssohn’s delightful chamber pieces, his 1838 violin sonata in F major, and they will couple this with the violin sonata in B flat major K 454 by Mozart, a wonderful mature work. The Friday and Saturday evening recitals will be preceded at 6.45pm by a short lecture on Mendelssohn, focusing in part on his violin sonata of 1838 and its curious history of amendments and revisions, finally published in 1953 after its discovery by Yehudi Menuhin. Both these recitals will commence at 7.30pm – guest seats at 300 baht are available from Khun Saeng on: [email protected] phone: 089 632 3818. The Sunday afternoon recital will start at 2.00pm and is for students and their relatives – special student price of 100 baht with combined student/one parent ticket at 250 baht. These are recitals not to be missed but please book early as seats are very limited.

India comes to life under Paul Swann’s eye

Photographer Paul Swann, far right,
is joined at the opening evening by friends and guests.

By Shana Kongmun

Paul Swann is an engaging young artist who recently returned from India where he spent time photographing the children and staff at the Kings World Trust for Children at Pudur, near in Tamil Nadu State, South India. The Kings World Trust was established in 1993 to provide a caring home, an education and skills training for orphan and homeless children mainly in India. Paul’s photographs have been compiled into a book that can be purchased at 2nd Floor Gallery and all proceeds will go towards the Kings World Trust for Children.

The photos are a wonderful mix of daily life, play and work and can also be purchased to help the project. The opening evening saw a great turnout of people who enjoyed the photos and fine Indian food on offer.

The 2nd Floor Gallery is located inside the moat on the corner of Ratvithi and Rachapakinai Roads, above the Kodak shop and is open in the evenings from 7 PM.

One of Paul’s many photos of children from the Kings World Trust for Children in Tamil Nadu in India.

Evocative of work and play, Paul’s photos capture life at the organization.

Petchnoi Osathaphan of the Embassy of the Republic of South Korea is joined by Raluque Ruangsook and friends at the opening party.

Art with a Big Difference – Exhibition at Chiang Mai University Art Gallery

The two student artists, Danaya Buntasnakul (left) and Wansawang Yensabaidee (right) on the opening night of the exhibition in front of one of Danaya’s paintings

If you are not timid, have an open mind and like experimental modern art, this is an exhibition not to miss. However, you must also not be afraid of a long flight of quite steep stairs first in order to reach the viewing room! The exhibition opened on July 1st will end on July 15th.

Two students, Danaya Buntasnakul and Wansawang Yensabaidee are showing around two dozen original canvasses. Those of Danaya are in brilliant colours and are reminiscent of ultra-impressionism. The artist explained that his paintings have been inspired by Doi Suthep – he himself is originally from Bangkok and his first impressions of life in Chiang Mai were dominated by the close and stunning views of this remarkable temple and surrounding green areas.

One large canvass in particular, painted in startling shades of green, gives the viewer an immediate feeling of luscious vegetation and contrasting plant forms. Student artist Wansavang has approached his paintings totally differently. Large whited-out canvasses are accompanied by smaller colourful canvasses, Wansavang explained that he painted the original, photographed it then covered it in white paint but used the photograph of the original as an accompaniment – the viewer is thus left staring at the large white canvass but then has as an aide-memoire the colours of the original to fire the imagination as to its meaning and form.

This exhibition is a brave and challenging one – it is certainly not one for the traditional or conservative-minded. What a pity the university chose to mount the exhibition in a somewhat remote room which has to be accessed along stark bare-walled grey corridors and that daunting staircase. The Gallery is located in the Arts Building on the corner of Suthep and Nimmanaemin Roads and there is ample car parking space at the front of the building.

The Mahler Cycle in Chiang Mai

His ten glorious symphonies dedicated to the cherished memory of Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani Vadhana will be presented in a Gala Opening Evening at the Rimping Condominium at 7:30 p.m. The first of a series of nine will offer “Symphony Number One In D (Titan)” with the Wiener Philharmoniker conducted by Leonard Bernstein, supplemented by the Song Cycle “Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen” with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau.

The nine subsequent Mahler Symphonies will be screened on alternate Wednesday evenings. These evenings are free with confirmed email invitation. Seating is limited and will be assigned on a first-come-first-served basis. Seats may only be requested from [email protected] state date of concert, number & names of each guest, and a telephone number. A confirming email invitation will be sent.

These incredibly magnificent symphonies are now offered live to the people of Bangkok by Maestro Somtow and the Siam Symphony Orchestra planned over a five or six year period. We here in Chiang Mai do not have a symphony orchestra and, some of us, not five or six years in which to enjoy them. This CYCLE will be presented via video DVD, projected on a large screen with a six speaker sound system, in a newly renovated ‘screening’ room in the Rimping Condominium. Attendance is free.

Mr. Jean-Pierre Kirkland, who is well known for his organizing of the recitals and concerts of the Friends of the Chiang Mai Music Festival, and now the Friends of Music Making in Chiang Mai, and for his informative lectures, will open each evening of the Cycle with a lecture designed to help the listeners appreciate and enjoy the music they will hear.

Friends of Music Making concert

Tasana Nagavajara (2nd left) is a highly talented musician whose visits to Chiang Mai never fail to delight. He is seen here at a charity concert at the Four Seasons Resort with MR Usni Pramoj (Far right)

The Friends of Music Making would like to invite Chiang Mai residents to their next recitals on July 22nd and 23rd when the dynamic violinist Tasana Nagavajara and the equally dynamic piano accompanist Pornphan Banternghansa will present a special preview recital, just for the group, of their forthcoming prestigious recital in the home of Felix Mendelssohn in Leipzig at the end of July – yet another first for the Friends!

Two repeat recitals will take place at Santi’s School of Music, Sirimangklanjan Soi 5, at the back of Central Kad Suan Kaew.

There will be a lecture each night on ‘Mendelssohn – Romantic Enigma’ at 6.45pm by JP.
Booking for members opens on July 1st and for the public on July 12th. Free to members.
Any guest seats for the evenings are 300 baht and in addition there will be a special student recital on Sunday July 24th at 2.00pm with student seats at just 100 baht and a special student and parent ‘combo’ ticket for 250 baht. Please spread the word!!
Program for Friday and Saturday July 22nd and 23rd at 7.30pm
• Mozart: Violin Sonata in B flat major, K 454 (1784)
• Mendelssohn: Violin Sonata in F major (1838)

Seats are limited and will be on a first-come first-served basis. Please reserve your seat right away by email to Saeng on: [email protected] phone: 089 632 3818
If you have any other enquiries, do contact JP on 084 868 1017, email: [email protected].

The student recital will contain the same 2 main pieces plus an additional extra item as a surprise. If there are places left members may also attend free.

The Friends of Music Making are taking applications for membership, contact them for further details.

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

City of Angels

Colours Galore! A New Exhibition at Gallery 116

Lifescapes Film Festival calls for submissions

Senses exhibition opening

A Memorable Event for Srinehru School

Chiang Mai Screening Program

Special Preview Recitals

India comes to life under Paul Swann’s eye

Art with a Big Difference – Exhibition at Chiang Mai University Art Gallery

The Mahler Cycle in Chiang Mai

Friends of Music Making concert