JP Pemapsorn Kritsadacharoenpong is a Thai contemporary artist who is displaying her abstract and portrait oil paintings in a solo exhibition at Midnice Gallery in Bangkok. In this interview she talks about art, the major influences in her work, and her plans for the future.
Art has always been a part of your life. When did you know you would become an artist?
It just happened spontaneously. I have never planned or dreamed to become a painter. After my first exhibition, it was official (smile).
As a contemporary artist, who influenced you the most?
As I don’t have an official academic title, I haven’t followed anyone’s steps. I simply paint what I feel and what I want and make my feelings exposed to the audience on canvas. So, for my style of painting, I don’t have anyone influenced me.
But if we talking about my way of thinking, passion and energy, I could say I am influenced by one Thai artist, Thawan Duchanee. He is a great artist who never gives up on art.
How has your style evolved over time?
By looking at various techniques and playing around with different materials and colors, I have slowly developed specific ways to achieve the results I want. As I have two different types of paintings, portraits are more difficult and I need to work much harder to capture the subjects’ expression.
What is the concept of your current abstract and portrait exhibition “Soul Panopticon”?
The Panopticon is a building designed by the philosopher Jeremy Bentham in the late 18th century. The concept of its design is to allow all (pan) to be observed (-opticon) by a single watchman. This, gallery visitors can observe all my feelings and emotions as I deliver on canvas for them.
When did you make these paintings?
I painted these works from 2014-2015.
What’s the art scene like in Bangkok compared to other major provinces in Thailand?
Nowadays, I’ve seen new galleries open in Bangkok and other major provinces in Thailand. Even in small towns like my hometown. People are more supportive and accept art. However, Bangkok is more thrusting in modernity and active comparison with the art scene in major provinces will apply only to local culture and its mixture with the Thai style.
Many foreigners believe that Thai people are only remotely interested in art. Is it true?
No, definitely not. Thai culture and the painters’ art scene is great in size and in beauty and glory. Perhaps Thai art isn’t that well known. To all the people who think that what you have asked, let them visit the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Jatujak. For sure they will change their opinion.
In today’s digital world, how does a painter “survive”?
Same like music and all traditional professions: people are coming back to classic materials. Sure, painting on tablet or sculpting in 3D software is fun. But holding the real brush or carving ornaments to wood, the smell of paint, the way you mix paint, and the textures you can create on a canvas will always remain fascinating. Plus, you can paint by digital painting, but you cannot add your expression on it. So, these real paintings cannot be substituted by any technology.
What are you working on right now?
I am developing new technique for my abstract paintings by combining it with my portrait style.
Are there any plans for future shows?
Yes, next year, when I’m planning to show the new artworks that I am working on right now.
The opening reception of “Soul Panopticon” was held at Midnice Gallery in Bangkok on Novemebr 7, 2015 and the exhibition was open until December 7, 2015.
Listen to JP talk about her philosophy: