Decentralized ThainessBy Sophirat Muangkum
Curated by Panu Boonpipattanapong

**Is it true that to be “Thai” one must strictly adhere to the characteristics defined by the Thai state?**

This question arose when I was challenged with the statement, “Your actions and attitudes are not like a Thai person’s at all.” This moment sparked the inspiration and motivation for my long-term project spanning from 2019 to 2024, titled “Decentralized Thainess – Diverse Perspectives on Thainess.”

Launched in 2019, this project focuses on cultural exchanges and learning directly from local communities across various regions (North, Northeast, Central, and South). It emphasizes storytelling and interviews with people who embody their unique interpretations of Thainess, rather than relying on books that convey Thai identity from an external writer’s viewpoint. This includes my experiences as an artist-in-residence in these communities.

As an artist, I see myself as a medium to amplify the diverse voices beyond the central narrative dictated by the state. My goal is to highlight those who deviate from conventional norms, promoting the understanding that valuing each person equally is fundamental to appreciating cultural and identity diversity.

Decentralize: The distribution or delegation of power away from a central authority.
Thainess: Encompasses Thai culture, including people, traditions, lifestyles, architecture, language, and attire. It is heritage passed down through generations and adapted to modern life, existing in both traditional and contemporary forms. 

*Definition of Thainess referenced from 2015 Discover Thainess / Thai Tourism 2015.*

Opening Event: Sat June 8, 2024 at 18.00 – 21.00 pm.
at 333Gallery / warehouse30

Free Admission with register required (Adult Only – Aged restricted Above 18 years old only)

For more information: visit our 333Gallerygroup facebook page 

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