The role of art education in Bangkok and its relevance on Twenty-first century Thai art practices

Paracciani-Pazzini, Loredana (2011) The role of art education in Bangkok and its relevance on Twenty-first century Thai art practices. Masters thesis, LASALLE College of the Arts.

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Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Title: The role of art education in Bangkok and its relevance on Twenty-first century Thai art practices

This is a study on twenty-first century Thai art education and the role it plays on the contemporary art scene.

Scholarly focus on contemporary Thai art, in English, is relatively recent and mostly conducted within a regional framework whereby Thai art is approached as part of the wider Southeast Asia.

This thesis extends the study of Thai art towards local investigation, that is, to focus on the education background of young and emerging Thai artists in order to examine two critical links: first, the link between art education and emerging art practitioners; second, the link between contemporary art practice and common themes and methodologies fostered among young artists. In Modern Art in Thailand, published in 1992, Professor Apinan Poshyananda starts the discourse on Thai art education, arguing that Thai art schools are based on the idea of art as cultural expression hence intimately related to the evolving historical circumstances. Indeed, formal education in its earliest stage in Thailand was conducted mainly in temples and centered on the reinforcement of cultural ideology. It was in the eighteenth century with King Chulalongkorn that education was transformed into a Western concept, thus initiating a discourse on modern pedagogy.

Professor John Clark, too, investigates the Thai school system (primarily at secondary level) quite extensively in Asian Modernities: Chinese and Thai Art Compared, 1980 to 1999. Yet his text ends in 1999 leaving uncovered the turn of the century and the first decade of twenty-first century. Overall, the literature pertaining to current Thai art education and its relevance on the younger artists is not substantial. It needs to be framed further by academic research developed to evaluate strengths and discrepancies within Thai art educational institutions at tertiary level and their legacy on the emerging population of artists.

This study focuses on three leading universities in Bangkok and their current pedagogy. By investigating their educational approach, the researcher traces some possible connections with the art practice of emerging artists. Furthermore, some common themes and methodologies, fostered by young art practitioners, are highlighted towards the end of this study to conclusively trace a line between art background and artwork.

The research conducted for this study is primarily investigative. The data sources include primary material collected through interviews with academic members in the three selective universities, and young artists graduated from the same institutions. The case study material is framed within the scholarly support provided by literature related to this topic, including universities’ collateral publications and exhibition catalogues, and by the broader informed population actively operating in the Thai contemporary art scene.

Subjects: Art History
Divisions: Faculty of Fine Arts > Master - Asian Art Histories
Depositing User: Ms Ashalatha Krishnan
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2012 08:47
Last Modified: 03 Dec 2012 09:17
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