March 2014

Chaiwat Kamfun: "Dynamic Movement"  Arts of Thailand  Janine Yasovant March 2014

Janine Yasovant
คลิกเพื่ออ่านบทความนี้ เป็นภาษาไทย

In February at the Chiang Mai University Art Exhibition Hall, I had an afternoon meeting with Chaiwat Kamfun who is an art instructor from Rajamangala Lanna University of Technology. Like some Thai artists I recently interviewed, he was a student of Silpakorn University where he acquired both Bachelor and Master's degrees in Thai Art in 2003 and 2007. Coincidentally, the day I met him was also the preparation date of a Art Thesis Exhibition for art students from Rajamangala Lanna. He and other art instructors came to inspect groups of students who brought their paintings, sculptures and prints along with them.


JY:It is my delight to meet a Thai Lanna artist. I saw your paintings many years ago but at that time I wondered who painted them.  Please tell us about yourself?      

CK: I was born in Chiang Mai Province in 1980 and received an advanced diploma fromRajamangala Lanna. After that I went to study for my Bachelor and Master's degrees. After graduation in 2007 I returned as an art lecturer in the Thai art department of the faculty of Fine Arts and Architecture at Rajamangala Lanna and I have been teaching here for 7 years.


JY: For several years you have created many beautiful paintings. Personally, I am very impressed with the eyes of mythical creatures such as Naga and Garuda in your works. Their eyes are so clear like a crystal ball. I would like to know briefly about recent awards you received from previous art contests and art exhibitions you attend within and out of Thailand.

CK: In 2007 I received the first prize from the Krung Thai Bank foundation 53rd Awards. At the National Exhibition of Art and in 2010 I received the third prize, the Bua Luang Bronze medal at the 32nd Bua Luang Paintings Exhibition of the Bangkok Bank Foundation. For notable exhibitions in foreign countries, in 2007 I attended the Art Singapore 2007 Exhibition at the Suntec Convention Center, and a year later I participated in the Art Santa Fe International Art Fair in the USA. In 2013 I had a solo exhibition at the National Art Gallery, Bangkok. Two places I frequently show my paintings are at the Chiang Mai University Art Center and the Bangkok Art and Culture Center.


JY: I had a chance to look at your art thesis. You studied and incorporated the concept of Thai mural paintings, along with Thai traditions in some of your paintings such as Temptation of Maras (Devils drowned in water) which depicts an interesting part of the life story of the Buddha before he achieved enlightenment. You also painted picture sets of Garuda capturing Naga in different postures. I read that you studied the movement of Amazon snakes before you drew the Naga. Snakes are so scary!

CK: (laughing) Really? I am scared of snakes too but I tried to draw out the feeling from nature and focused on the visual elements to show powerful dynamic movement. Observation is a great practice for drawing.


JY: For this Thai style work of art, is there an artist who inspired you, whose work has a big influence on your working style?

CK: There are so many great artists and artworks out there in Thailand. For example, Professor Chalood Nimsamer is my inspiration in work philosophy to produce such superb quality artworks one day. Other than that, the mythical creatures set, lotuses set, garuda and naga sets, sketching sets from various Thai artisans of past generations are always excellent models. Moreover, the water movement set is interesting and impressive to me and I apply the techniques in most of my painting.


JY: What problems concern you the most?

CK: In my view, the primary problem is the lack of information provided to people in society. Many believed that Art is too difficult to reach and understand. To put it more simply, not many people understand the true purpose of art as they lack the opportunity to learn or refuse to know more about it. Lack of support from all relevant parties is another concern. To overcome these problems, we have to provide practical knowledge, suitable learning centers and competent art instructors as well as consistent financial support and especially the right mindset. Thailand needs people who realize that true artworks are invaluable because they offer learning about good and bad experiences which can be used practically in various real-life situations. A basic solution is using everything around us and every chance available to inform, teach and advise everyone openly and creatively. Frequent release of art works to the public is necessary to achieve this goal.


JY: In the near future, do you have any work-in-progress or finished paintings to show us which project what you want to use as good examples of better models?

CK: My current and future artworks are called "semi-abstract" paintings. They focus on concept and dynamic movement, overlapping and abridging. I have to focus on my works more and improve my skill continuously. This can make the prototypes of working principles to create excellent paintings that can serve as models for anyone to learn. My goal right now is to teach people to realize the value of art, open their minds to accept art and not restrict their thoughts in any way. Society will see public benefits from these concepts and these are for everyone not just for certain individuals. An artist can step up to be a thinking leader, helping to shape social creativity into reality. The road of art is an important project to encourage people in the community to participate in creative activities such as trying to improve the scenery in the village. When they accept the ideas of a respectable leader who is also a visionary artist, they can easily follow the right principles and expand these to benefit themselves and the community artistically. In addition to this, they can simply apply artistic prowess to other careers or even areas that have nothing directly to do with art.



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คลิกเพื่ออ่านบทความนี้ เป็นภาษาไทย

Scene4 Magazine: Janine Yasovant

Janine Yasovant is a writer in Chiang Mai, Thailand and a Senior Writer for Scene4.
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Scene4 - International Magazine of Arts and Culture

March 2014

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