Enchanting with their easels

Art July 11, 2015 01:00


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The high quality of the entries to the 2015 edition of the Asia Plus Art Contest reveals Thailand's burgeoning talent

SILPAKORN UNIVERSITY student Suttiphon Lochaisong was recently announced as the winner of the 5th Asia Plus Art Contest for his work, “Reflection of Sensation”.
His painting, along with those of the runners-up and other participants in the recently ended competition are now on show at the Queen’s Gallery on Rajdamnoen Klang Road until August 7. 
Suttiphon went home with Bt200,000 and a certificate. First runner-up Vimol Keamark won Bt150,000 for his “Fighting 2015” while Chumpon Promjit came in third and received Bt100,000 for “Contemporary Folk Cultures”. Four other young artists received honourable mentions and Bt50,000 apiece: Jirasak Anoujohn for “Silence”, Niroj Jarungjitwittawat for “Pla-Ta-Pien Song No 1”, Raweepon Pradit for “Glittering Colours and Trick”, and Thidarat Chantachua for “Pray No 3”. 
“I’m stunned! I really didn’t think that my artwork could win,” said a delighted Suttiphon.
“This was my first time submitting a painting to the Asia Plus contest. When I read the concept and saw it related to rhythm, music, poetry and art, I knew immediately my work should reflect feeling. I play the guitar and harp and have played with a Thai folk orchestra so I know the depth of feeling music inspires. For ‘Feeling Reflections’, I used an old Thai engineering technique. First I carved a hole in the paper. Then, I wrapped powered colours in a white cloth so it was like a compress. After that, I put the frame parallel with the ground and used the compress before coating it again,” said Suttiphon.
Vimol said he drew inspiration from the Buddhist philosophy of self-realisation and conscience. “The overlapping rhythm and movement depict the beauty and conflict in the mind,” he explained.
For his part, Chumpon mixed the Southern culture in which he was raised with contemporary social values.
Visual artist Chalermchai Kositpipat, who along with his peers Ithipol Thangchalok, Preecha Thaothong, Thaworn Koudomvit and Somsak Raksuwan made up the panel of judges, was impressed by the quality of the submissions.
“It’s an excellent contest and the artworks continually improve. This year’s topic was interesting and all the artists clearly expressed the notion. The winner brought music, poetry and art to his work. It has a beautiful cadence and is harmonious and melodious with a multi-dimensional surface that expresses the national identity. When you look at this artwork, you can see the Thai style hidden in various spots,” Chalermchai told XP.
Asia Plus was also so pleased with the quality that the company decided to increase the value of the prizes.
“We are pleased to see that our aim of encouraging artists has been achieved. This year, we received 113 artworks from 80 artists. That is slightly less than in previous years but the quality was much higher, so such so in fact that felt it only right to increase the prize money,” said Dr Kongkiat Opaswongkarn, chief executive of Asia Plus.
Winning Strokes
- The exhibition of the 5th Asia Plus Art Contest is on at the Queen’s Gallery, Rajdamnoen Klang Road through August 7. The gallery is open daily except Wednesday from 10am to 7pm.