Singhaseni is an
person in the field of
art education in
Thailand. He is a highly
respected person who is
loved by his students. It
is an honor for me to
bring this interview with
him about the progress of
the art of watercolor
paintings with the
intention to help spread
the work of Thai artists
to the international
scene. This article is a
review of the Art Circle,
painting; many artists
are unique. In their
relationship with of the
Singhaseni was selected
as a judge to travel
continuously and his
experience to help the
success of Thai artists
. Please tell us about your life and family.
I was born in Bangkok on January 22,1951. I attended Satri Chulnak School,
Lan Luang Road, which is a private school for boys and girls. I studied there
happily from kindergarten to grade seven (which is the first grade seven in the
country that originally only had up to grade 4). Then I moved to secondary
school 1-3 at Yothinburana School. It was an all-boys school with a dashing
military style, and during that time I got to know College of Fine Arts, from
friends and seniors who were studying at a school that only teaches art. It was
like a dream school,I came to take the exam to become the 17th generation of
College of Fine Arts students. In my parent's house my mother only asked me
simply, what are you going to do to earn your living? At that time, I couldn't
think about it. I knew only that I wanted to learn to paint. I studied in the 1st
-3rd year (1968-1970) with my classmates Vichok Mukdamanee and Sarawut
Duangchampa. Now Ajarn Sarawut Duangchampa becomes a National Artist
2017 and Professor Vichok Mukdamanee also a National Artist 2012 who passed
away two years ago.
Then I took the entrance examination to study at the Faculty of Painting
Sculpture and Graphic Arts Silpakorn University; the 29th class in 1972-1976, is
a five-year course. I chose to major in Oil Painting as an art students dream of,
and I also chose to study Printmaking because students liked Andy Warhol's
silkscreen technique, which was very popular at the time. When we were in the
university, we made money by printing t-shirts, selling them, and doing various
tasks to raise money to buy colors and canvas from silkscreen techniques.
There are classmates who continue to do art to this day, namely Parinya
Tantisuk Sriwan Janehatthakankit and Sompong Adulsaraphan. Now Emeritus
Professor Prinya Tantisuk (a National Artist 2018) and the other two are still
working in art until today.
After I graduated with a bachelor's degree in the Faculty of Painting (Second
Class Honors), I took the entrance exam to be an art teacher at College of Fine
Arts in 1979 when Ajarn Sawat Tantisuk (National Artist 1991) was the director
of the college. I was assigned to start teaching watercolor for first-year students,
which I was very satisfied with because I wanted to instill in the children the
correct knowledge-basics of watercolor that I studied at College of Fine Arts and
at Silpakorn University.
In 1980, College of fine Arts sent me to take the exam and I received a
scholarship: "The Ship for Southeast Asian Youth Programme 1980" I was one
of 35 students as representatives of Thailand to traveled and spent two months
on board the ship Nippon Maru with 35 youths from ASEAN and Japan from
each country. For many of the youth of each country this was their first trip
abroad in their lives.
While teaching at College of fine Arts in 1982, Me and Ajarn Vichok
Mukdamanee, Ajarn Montien Bunma, Ajarn Somsak Chowtadapong (National
Artist 2017), Ajarn Panya Vichinthanasarn (National Artist 2014), Ajarn Sriwan
Janehatthakarnkit, and Ajarn Pichit Tangcharoen etc. together with other
faculty members and independent artists established a contemporary
watercolor group under the name "White Group" (Thailand Contemporary
Watercolorists). There were creative contemporary watercolor works that did
not adhere to the traditional style of watercolor work. Its goal was to discover
new techniques and methods of presentation to Thailand's watercolor circle.
The White Group has continuously exhibited contemporary watercolor works
both domestically and internationally. There have been watercolor exhibitions
for more than 15 years consecutively, from 1982-1997. We joined the Asian
Watercolor Confederation, which has members from ASEAN countries. Each
country rotates as a host, which included hosting an exhibition "Asian
Watercolour Exhibition" twice in Thailand in 1989 and 1995. It was very
Later, I found time to further study for a master's degree in painting at the
Faculty of Painting, Silpakorn University and completed the course in 1986 with
an excellent score, presenting a thesis on watercolor techniques. After
completing my master's degree, I returned to teach at College of fine Arts. In
1990, I had the opportunity to receive a scholarship from SPAFA (SEAMEO
Reginal Center for Archeology and Fine Arts) to train in "Handicrafts and
Folkcrafts", Art Center, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia for up to two months. There I
received knowledge and techniques about Balinese folk art that was very useful
in creating art. In the year 1991, during which Ajarn Thongchai Rakpatum
(National Artist 2010) was the college director. I had the opportunity to help
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs organized an exhibition for His Royal Highness
Prince Naradhip Bongsprabandh at the United Nations Headquarters in Paris
and Geneva for two months which also gave me the opportunity to see the
original artwork from real paintings that is not a picture in a textbook for the
first time from various museums. Both in Paris and Geneva, it inspired me and I
took back the creative energy of those works of art to the fullest.
I taught at College of fine Arts until 1995. Then another major change happened
in my life: I transferred to teach at the Department of Fine Arts, Faculty of
Architecture King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang (KMITL) with
the persuasion of Ajarn Sriwan Janehuttakarnkit who had transferred from the
College of fine Arts to teach there previously, with Professor Kiattisak
Chanonnart, (National Artist 2006 ) the head of the department at that time,
and Professor Decha Warashoon (National Artist 2007), another senior teacher
in the department who has always supported me. In 2003, I was given the
position of Head of the Department of Fine Arts after Professor Kiattisak
Chanonnart, who retired from government service that year.
Throughout my time teaching art at both places, I have taught watercolor and
oil painting to undergraduate students, and when a Master's degree program in
Visual Arts came up, I had to change to teaching various subjects at the Master's
level instead. During a period of 16 years teaching at KMITL I had the
opportunity to bring the work of the faculty members in the department to
exhibit and exchange exhibitions with foreign institutions many times, allowing
them travel to connect with universities and galleries, including seeing work
from museums and sharing workshops with many other countries such as
Germany, Japan and the USA. In addition, each year we faculty members in the
department often gathered to organize trips during the October vacation to visit
international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale, as well as the art museum
and art gallery in different cities in Italy,France, German and Japan to increase
our knowledge and vision in creating contemporary art. I practiced government
service and taught art until the end of retirement in the year 2011. and I was
appointed to the position of academic Associate Professor Level-9
I am living happily after retirement with a family of three, parents and children,
and my wife Khun Pao (Thapthim Singhaseni) who was an early retiree from
CIMBTHAI Bank two years before me to take care of Nong Jitt (Samanjit
Saengchak) who is a child of Down Syndrome. Nong Jitt is the real sister of
Khun Pao who is younger than 16 years old. We have taken care of the younger
like a daughter from 2003 until the present. Nong Jitt's real father and mother
have passed away. And she was content to choose us as caregivers and call us
mom and dad instead.
After retirement, I continued to work in art and teach art continuously being
invited as a guest lecturer at the master's level at the Department of Fine Arts,
School of Architecture, Art and Design, King Mongkut's Institute of Technology
Ladkrabang and a guest lecturer teaching at the master's and bachelor's degree
levels at the Faculty of Fine Arts, Bunditpatanasilpa Institute, Salaya. In
addition, I am also an external expert to take the master's thesis examination
for the Faculty of Painting Sculpture and Graphic Arts, Silpakorn University,
Sanam Chan Palace Campus. I joined the judging committee of the National
Youth and Juvenile Art Exhibition and as a guest speaker to lecture on art or
participate in watercolor training sessions on different agendas.
I work on watercolor painting almost every day. Some acrylic painting, and
some oil painting as time and opportunity permit. In fact, after retirement,
there should be more time to paint, but with the burden of teaching and taking
care of the family, which is very important, the time must be allocated
Watercolor painting or artistic work is the main work in my life. It is the release
of emotions and thoughts to be immersed in the work. Each and every day, I
always think that the next one must fix the "bugs" and make it better than the
old one. When getting a new piece of work, it often relies on publishing via
social media such as Facebook. I am happy every time I have painted a picture.
I researched and tried to find fun techniques to create and use as a teaching
medium for my time as a lecturer for the participants of the watercolor training
course that the Bunditpatanasilpa Institute opens every year.
Before the outbreak of Covid-19, I usually had the opportunity to travel abroad
often, especially to Japan. As my wife, Khun Pao, has a hobby of Japanese
sewing (Quilt and Patchwork), making a frequent visit to the annual exhibitions
in Tokyo and other cities. I would take this opportunity to see the museums and
gallery. Having the opportunity to paint watercolors every time we travel and
see work it makes me feel that there is always something new in my mind. The
most impressive was probably the trip to stay at a hotel beside Lake
Kawaguchiko, in front of Mt.Fuji volcano, where there is nothing to cover your
eyes. Waking up to paint Fuji early in the morning late afternoon and evening.
The two of us were the happiest days in the world. Brought a lot of beautiful
watercolors and drawings back from Mt.Fuji and we plan to go back next year to
paint watercolor of Mt.Fuji in Autumn which is the most beautiful season in
When it comes to hobbies after retirement, besides watercolor painting, another
thing that interests me is cooking and baking, but only doing what I want to eat
or like. At home, I take care of food for my wife and daughter. The two of them
will come up with a menu and tell me in advance what they want to eat
tomorrow. Nowadays, thanks to the Internet, YouTube, and Facebook, we can
more easily access learning resources than when we were in elementary school,
high school or university in the past. Want to cook, make sweets, go to see art in
various galleries, both locally and internationally, or want to publish art? It can
be done in the blink of an eye. Another thing we both love is watching the
Korean television series. It's not only fun but also full of art and moral. There's a
lot to gain besides entertainment from these Korean dramas. In the end, just
seeing the majestic and beautiful Korean art galleries, designs, and
contemporary architectural styles of Korea in the movie brought tears to my
eyes. I can only pray that the millionaires in Thailand or the government have
taste and dare to invest like this.
. Please tell us about teaching, art award-winning watercolor works,
techniques, and workshops, both domestically and internationally.
Before going seriously with watercolor, I originally painted with oil paints
in a semi-abstract and abstract style, since studying for a bachelor's degree at
the Faculty of Painting and first working at College of Fine Arts, but after
returning to see contemporary art in France, I began to switch from oil painting
techniques to acrylic paints. Worked with acrylic paints along with watercolors
all the time, when retired and returned to work at home. Painting on a large
easel is starting to be a problem in a small house.
At work, watercolor painting is a technique that is not difficult, does not require
a lot of space, and the equipment can be easily moved, making a watercolor
painting work that turns from a hobby to a real style during the past 10 years.
The watercolor circle both in Thailand and abroad has become more active.
People are more interested in learning or training in watercolors. A new
generation of watercolor artists has emerged, all with skills and styles, as well as
more interesting unique techniques, including both old and new foreign
watercolor artists. Important events sparked the watercolor circle in Thailand
our home was very excited in 2014, namely the exhibition. "World Watermedia
Exposition,Thailand 2014" at Rajadamnern Contemporary Art Gallery, Bangkok
from 11 June – 20 July 2014, organized by the Office of Contemporary Art and
Culture. Ministry of Culture with Ajarn Somsak Chowtadapong, myself, and Mr.
Sattha Homsawat (LaFe) as a team of curators. The event was very successful,
allowing Thai people to get to know watercolor works and meet in person, both
Thai and foreign watercolor artists, including organizing a watercolor workshop
that was crowded with participants. That is the origin of the growth and
development of watercolors in our country continuously until today. I myself
had the opportunity to participated in many watercolor exhibitions both in
Thailand and abroad.
What I'm proud of is that in 2020 I received "Best Watercolor Artist" Jury
Award Tbilisi Watercolor Festival 2020, Tbilisi, Georgia. from Georgia. And
after that I won many other awards such as in 2022 – Top 80 Paintings Award
"Spring" Malaysia International Online Juried Art Competition 2022. Still-Life
& Floral Category, and in 2021 - Top 80 Paintings Award "Autumn" Malaysia
International Online Juried Art Competition 2021. Landscape Category. As for
the award in my country, the highest award in my life would be in "Silpa
Bhirasri Creativity Grants 2007 (A Program to Honor Thai Artists of Distinction
7th Grant Series) exhibited at the Silpakorn University Art Gallery. For an
important international workshop, it was an honor to be able to show
watercolor paintings and demonstration on behalf of Thai artists in the
international watercolor exhibition Fabriano in Acquarello 2018 in Fabriano,
At present, I am also a guest lecturer who teaches and trains in watercolors for
attendees of the general public every year in the summer semester organized by
Bunditpatanasilpa Institute. I am trying to find ways and techniques for
creating watercolor works that are always evolving, such as the use of
watercolor with pen drawing (Watercolor and Pen, some textbooks call it Pen
and Wash), and technique: watercolor and Chinese Ink, adapted from
traditional Chinese calligraphy to contemporary watercolor in my unique style,
to be disseminated for broad benefits by publishing in online media such as
Facebook or writing in academic articles and for use in teaching and learning
for those who are interested further.
. How is the world watercolor circle that has submitted work to the contest
important and has changed and developed the work?
. At present, the watercolor society in this country has developed and
changed according to more popular trends. The most obvious was the year
2014: an exhibition in Thailand, "World Watermedia Exposition, Thailand
2014" at Rajadamnern Contemporary Art Gallery Bangkok. Organized by The
Office of Contemporary Art and Culture Ministry of Culture invited watercolor
artists from abroad including John Salminen (USA), Joe Francis Dowden
(England), Igor Sava (Italy), Liu Yi (China), Konstantin Sterkhov (Russia), Yuko
Nagayama (Japan). There were more than 290 works to view. It was an event
that sparked people in the watercolor society. We were aroused to see the
original watercolor works from professional watercolor artists both in Thailand
and abroad at the international level. Meet and talk with real artists who
attended the event, seeing demonstrations and a variety of presentation
techniques. After that, there was a change in the watercolor circle in the country
that drove more activities, including the establishment of watercolor groups and
membership in international watercolor associations with global networks: such
as International Watercolor Society (IWS) Thailand, IWS Secret Art Garden at
Korat, Hua Hin Artists Village of Thawee Kesa Ngam etc.
Organizing exhibitions and workshops at various galleries and venues,
submitting entries for contests and participating in annual domestic and
international exhibitions held by each country in Asia and Europe in an
increasing rotation.There are now more Thai watercolor artists who have won
international awards and have been selected to participate in more
international exhibitions such as LaFe (Satha Homsawat), Aood Ampawa
This causes competition and develops one's own craftsmanship to an
international standard even more, including the use of good quality materials,
paper, paint, and brushes, making the work valuable both in art and
commercial as well. In the year 2018, I had the opportunity to be selected to be
a representative of Thai artists (Community Representative) to attend
exhibitions and demonstrations of watercolors abroad at Fabriano in Acquarello
2018. It demonstrated that Thai watercolor artists are not inferior to other
national artists. The watercolor of Asia and abroad, we still remember each
other who are on a Master level, such as Ong Kim Seng (Singapore), Jayson
Yeoh (Malaysia) etc., every time we met.
LaFe was also one of the earliest pioneers to showcase his work and Thai
watercolor artists around the world. Has received many awards and is well
known in the eyes of people in the international watercolor world. LaFe, in
particular, had the craftsmanship and creativity to paint a single rose full size
on an A1 sheet (56 x 76 cm) beautifully within 1 hour at the demonstration,
which became a signature for which everyone in the circle is well known. LaFe
is now invited to participate in exhibitions or invited to be judge of many
international watercolor contests. It is an honor for Thailand to have
representatives of Thai watercolor artists judging work at an international level
that is accepted by the watercolor society. For others, becoming an international
judge is not an easy task and requires skill and work to be recognized by the
International Watercolor Association as well.
After the outbreak of Covid-19 at the end of 2019, the international watercolor
competitions and exhibitions that used to submit actual works must be modified
to be submitted as artwork files. and displayed in the form of an online
exhibition, instead, which has both good and bad results We will only pay the
application fee for submitting the work online, but we do not have to pay for the
actual submission. As for receiving the award, it is up to the host to agree on
who will pay the expenses. Artists who receive the award usually have to pay
the cost of sending the award back. For the certificate, in the past, it was
actually sent back comes with the returned job, but today's online job fairs can
download the certificate online now. If you want to sell, specify the price when
filling out the online application. If selling, the host will usually ask for a 30%
processing fee. It is expected that after the outbreak has subsided, the event and
the watercolor contest in the form of submitting the actual work will be
displayed. A number of countries are now starting to resume online and
submitting their actual works, such as IWS INDIA Plein Air Festival and
Competition in New Delhi 2023, Step by Step International Foundation
Contemporary Watercolor Art, Poland, International Watercolor Society Art
Contest, including the websites, YouTube, and Facebook of each artist, which is
easily accessible and very useful. In terms of trading and selling watercolor
works in Thailand, depending on many factors, such as the price increase.
Satisfaction of the artist the owner of the work with the buyer who agreed
directly is important.
Maybe starting at a hundred to a hundred thousand dollars, gallery
consignment prices have to be increased by 30-50%, and charitable auction
prices are often higher than the ceiling set by the artist or auctioneer. As for the
sale of the work abroad, when sending the work to the show, the artist will
inform the price that he has set and add another percentage specified by the
organizer. But it is also a good sign for that watercolor works can be sold for
hundreds of thousands of dollars. It's nice to have a new generation of
collectors who appreciate the work and support the new generation of artists to
be encouraged to continue their creations.
In the end, watercolor for me at the beginning of school has the characteristic
that it is thin and transparent. Do not use white or black mixed because it will
make the color cloudy and dirty, so I always like to paint a thin, clean, clear
color. But over time as one gets older, more experience, more work, and more
open thinking. My current watercolor work has so many bright and vivid,
sometimes intense colors that I use black Chinese ink to blend with watercolors
to make my work look different from the past. Looking more discreet, the
important thing is that there is something more interesting to follow.
Born - 1951.
1977 - B.F.A., Painting (2ndHons.), Silpakorn University, Bangkok.
1986 - M.F.A., Painting, Silpakorn University, Bangkok.
1990 - Cert. Handicrafts and Folkcrafts at Art Center, Bali, Indonesia.
Previous - Associate Professor, Department of Fine Arts,
Faculty of Architecture, King Mongkut's Institute
of Technology Lad Krabang, Bangkok.
Retired - 2011
Present - Guest Instructor
Department of Fine Arts, School of Architecture,
Art and Design, King Mongkut's Institute of
Technology, Ladkrabang, Bangkok, 10520.
Faculty of Fine Arts, Banditpattanasilpa Institute,
Salaya, Nakornpathom. 73170.
2022 - Top 80 Paintings Award "Spring" Malaysia
International Online Juried Art Competition
Still-Life & Floral Category.
2021 - Top 80 Paintings Award "Autumn" Malaysia
International Online Juried Art Competition
JIWI Japan International Watercolor Exhibition, Nigata, Japan Autumn 2021.
"Top 100 Artists" Celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Founding of the
Communist Party of China.
"Top 80 Paintings Award "Spring" S Malaysia, International Online Juried Art
Competition, Still-Life and Floral Category.
JIWI Japan International Watercolor Exhibition, Nigata, Japan Summer 2021.
2020 - "Best Watercolor Artist" Jury Award Tbilisi Watercolor Festival 2020,
"Top 80 Paintings Award Malaysia International, Online Juried Art
Competition, Floral Category.
"International Watercolor Society (IWS) Thailand, Watercolor Master Artist
2020 Award", by International Watercolor Society Globe Network.
2018 - Thailand representative artist demonstration in Fabriano in Acquarello
2018, Fabriano, Italy.
2007 - Silpa Bhirasri Creativity Grants 2007. (A Program to Honor Thai Artists
of Distinction 7th Grant Series).
1990 - SPAFA Scholarship for "Handicrafts and Folkcrafts", Art Center, Bali,
1985 - Scholarship for M.F.A. Degree, Silpakorn University.
1980 - Scholarship for "The Ship for Southeast Asian Youth, Programme 1980".
1972-1976 - Scholarship from Thai Farmers Bank.
2015 - "Sannarong's Watercolour" at Kinokuniya, Siam Paragon and Isetan
,World Trade Center, Bangkok.
2011 - "The Story of Colours" at Jamjuree Art Gallery, Bangkok.
2002 -"Me and My Colours 1995-2002" at The Gallery of
the Faculty of Painting Sculpture and Graphic Arts, Silpakorn University.
1994 - "From Past…to Present" The National Gallery, Bangkok.
The Art Corner, Bangkok Playhouse, Bangkok.