exhibtion view on CITIES ON THE MOVE- We Can't Forget How To Move, Aug 2022, Silpakorn University, Bangkok, Thailand

The Food of Pagpda

2022, fabric, cotton, thread, cecment, raw rice


During a two-week residency in Bangkok, Thailand, the artist was struck by the prevalent use of forks and spoons, even when consuming dry stir-fried noodles, which contrasted with the predominant use of chopsticks in Thai restaurants worldwide. This observation sparked the artist's interest in exploring cultural customs and perceptions, particularly why Thailand, despite never being colonized, adopted utensils that didn't align with its local cuisine. This inquiry led to a deeper investigation into Thailand's post-colonial influences and the reasons behind the king's embrace of Westernized habits, shedding light on how imperialist history continues to shape everyday life.

Inspired by the architectural symbol of the pagoda—a tiered tower common in Asian countries, typically with religious significance—the artist embarked on a creative journey to integrate rice, a staple of East Asian culture, into the artistic narrative. Pagodas historically served as sacred spaces housing Buddhist or Taoist artifacts and scriptures, contributing to the spiritual fabric of their communities.

In the final artwork, the artist aims to underscore the significance of rice in shaping the landscape, economy, and people of East Asian nations. Through a playful juxtaposition of rice with the religious and historical context of Thailand, the artwork serves as a reflection on cultural identity and the enduring impact of tradition in a rapidly evolving world.