15 November 2023 – 6 January 2024
Preview: Tuesday, 14 November, 6-8pm
Flowers Gallery is delighted to present Outworn by Jakkai Siributr in conjunction with his first major survey exhibition titled Jakkai Siributr: Everybody Wanna Be Happy at CHAT/The Mills (the Centre for Heritage, Arts, and Textile) in Hong Kong. Siributr is renowned for his intricate tapestries and installations through sewing, embroidery and collaborative community- based projects to weave individual stories resulting from religious and social conflicts on the human condition and diaspora cross South East Asia.
Outworn will present a new series of five tapestried installations. Each assembled by stitching together uniforms gathered from workers in the service industry in Thailand reflects the artist’s sentiments towards authorities’ handling of the pandemic. Thailand, largely dependent on tourism, went through lengthy periods of economic stagnation and the resulting widespread unemployment brought about a time of financial, physical and psychological uncertainty. Uniforms of various professions in the tourism sector that became obsolete were collected through monetary exchange as a way to assist those individuals who most suffered economically.
The uniforms were disassembled and reassembled into a tapestry bedecked with Buddha symbols, beads, found objects and artificial Marigold flowers and other talismanic objects. These objects allude to a notion in Thai society that without trust in the authorities, the majority of the population still chooses superstitious beliefs over an institution. A consistent theme in Siributr’s practice examines the interaction of Buddhism and materialism in modern life, and everyday popular culture of Thailand.
Garments have long been a central medium for Siributr, often using police and army uniforms as a means of expressing unspoken political and social issues. 18/28: The Singhaseni Tapestries (2017-2018), Siributr’s most personal work, consists of five of his mother’s dresses that are meticulously embroidered along with nine large scale tapestries made from disassembled garments of the artist’s relatives. As Siributr reflects, “Textile can be anything. It does not always have to be a two-dimensional wall hanging. It can be decorative, or conceptual. The most important thing is that I fully embrace it.” Jakkai relates the intensive, detailed hand-stitching within his works to a meditative practice, connecting to traditional Thai craft processes to comment on contemporary social and political issues.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Jakkai Siributr (b. 1969) lives and works in Bangkok and Chiang Mai,Thailand. He is known for his intricately hand- made tapestries, quilts and installations, which convey powerful responses to contemporary and historical soci- etal issues in Thailand.
Siributr studied Textile and Fine Arts at Indiana University, Bloomington, USA; and Printed Textile Design, at Philadelphia University, USA. He has exhibited widely, with notable exhibitions including Garmenting: Costume as Contemporary Art at Museum of Arts and Design, New York (2022); Bangkok Art Biennale (2018); the 9th Asia Pacific Triennale of Contemporary Art at the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane, Australia (2018), Exploring the Cosmos: The Stupa as a Buddhist Symbol, Asian Civilizations Museum, Singapore (2013); Phantoms of Asia: Contemporary Awakens the Past at Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, California, USA (2012); Link Tradition and Future – the 2nd Chongqing Biennale for Young Artists, The Art Museum of Sichuan Fine Art Institute, Chongqing, China (2011). His works are in the public collections of Queensland Art Gallery and Gal- lery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia; FENIX, Rotterdam, Netherlands; National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art, Taiwan; Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, USA; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Seattle, USA; Vehbi Koc Foundation, Istanbul,Turkey; and the Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore.
Opening Hours:Tuesday – Saturday, 11 am – 6 pm
Notes to Editors
Image Credits: © Jakkai Siributr, courtesy of Flowers Gallery
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