I had another weekend at the exhibits at the current Bangkok Design Festival held at various malls in the city. I met up with Shanghai Tang, with girl friend in tow, at Paragon and we then proceeded to check out the show.
According to the booklet of the event, "This year's Bangkok Design Festival is, not surprisingly, full of new forms and functions that advocate both individualism and social responsibility, the flair of the professional and the freshness of the amateur, the dead-serious and the mordantly humorous, the provocative style and the beauty that needs both more time and more heart to perceive clearly." (The design festival also has a number of workshops, competitions, and seminars.)
Whew, what can I say? It's pretty much a hodge-podge of everything design related, including architecture, furniture, sculptures, art installations, photography, and everything else in between. It's a very interesting mix of media and interpretations, although a bit incoherent again (at least in my eyes). The good thing about it though is that with the location of the show being in malls, the organizers welcomed more people of various interests to take a peek into the exhibit. Talk about bringing art to the masses.
One of the more striking sections of the exhibit is the Floating in Bangkok show. The collaboration of Thai, Japanese, and French artists produced Amphibious City Lab, which creates a scenario in which Bangkok is submerged underwater in 2600. It's a bit creepy actually.
Crossing over to the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, a number of exhibits delved into and criticized sprawling urbanity in Bangkok. In a section called Transforming Public Spaces: Change Bangkok, one exhibition took snapshots of everyday Bangkok life, and another takes a prying look at the so-called faults of the city while soliciting suggestions and comments from the audience.
One of the more striking exhibits is called 2-80222-abstract paintings?! are photographs of the roofs of city buses in Bangkok. The layers of paint and rust create sharp patterns that are likewise intriguing.
I'm sooo excited that Bangkok is currently giving more space to art in the city. It's especially remarkable how accessible these are, hence, encouraging people who would not want to go to a museum otherwise, to dip their fingers in contemporary art. And apparently, I've found an art-enthusiast-buddy in Shanghai Tang. As it is, we are planning to check movies in the upcoming World Film Festival of Bangkok as well as take a trip in some Bangkok suburb to check the sculpture park. Lots of things to look forward to indeed.