07 April 2023 - 11 June 2023, VILLA MALPENSATA
MUSEC inaugurates the solo exhibition of Attasit Pokpong (Bangkok, 1977), one of the leading exponents of Thai contemporary art.
The exhibition, curated by Giancarlo Ermotti, Paolo Maiullari and Nora Segreto, brings together 29 large-scale oil paintings and 22 watercolours depicting women's faces. This is the subject that, after the survey of Thailand's natural landscapes and Bangkok's urban ones, became the most characteristic element of Pokpong's production between 2008 and 2023, in which the artist elaborates a very personal style, also becoming the forerunner of a new way of proposing female portraits. Attasit Pokpong's woman, whose features are inspired by those of his wife, is almost always impassive, portrayed in close-up and frontally. The clean cut of her hair frames her face, where the brightly coloured lips emphasise her charm and the oriental features of her oval make her gaze penetrating, capable of communicating with the viewer. The Thai artist calls her work "an art of presence", where the mediation of the female figure testifies to the encounter between the world's multiple specificities. For Pokpong, the female face is the absolute symbol of emotion and the communicative form par excellence, as well as the ideal expressive vehicle of her art, as it is able to fascinate and disturb her inner world, enhancing its creative potential.
Pokpong has recently experimented with a new communicative register consisting of the reflection of people and things on the lenses of his protagonists' sunglasses. The subjects not only show the sensible reality, but also the inner reality, made up of past and present, roots and new identities. Through the mirror, Pokpong evokes contemporary society, the past, the other, the future, change, and invites the viewer to physically place himself in front of the work and immerse himself directly in the proposed themes.
The exhibition inaugurates MUSEC's Global Aesthetics project, dedicated to exploring the relationship between contemporary art and the ideological and cultural context in which it moves. The first appointments will focus in particular on Asia and Africa, today lively laboratories of artistic experimentation. In the first months of 2023, the artist has created 14 new works specially designed to be exhibited in MUSEC's Spazio Cielo.
An English-language catalogue published by the Fondazione culture e musei accompanies the exhibition.
Attasit Pokpong was born in Bangkok in 1977. From an early age, he was drawn towards drawing, which he furthered by attending the Rajamangala University of Technology in Bangkok, where he graduated in Fine Arts in 1998. His career started immediately after his studies. Since 1999, he has taken part in numerous group exhibitions and in 2009, he opened the Magic Gallery in the Thai capital in order to have a permanent space in which to present his work. From 2009 onwards, he exhibited in numerous solo shows that took him beyond the borders of Thailand and Asia, to countries such as Cambodia, China, Korea, Taiwan, Belgium, France, Italy and the United States. The MUSEC exhibition is his first solo show in Switzerland. Sensitive to the recognition of a new multicultural reality and aware of the constructive contribution that the artist can make to the current context marked by many fragilities, in 2012 Pokpong inaugurated the V64 Art Studio project, a meeting point available to the Thai art community, a 'place of creativity' clearly visible and open to the world.