From (Different) Horizons of Rockshelter
artist Vipash Purichanont
location THAILAND, Ban Rai
region 1 North (North)
index no. 17.1.01
about the media Book with pictures and information on the project.
date of input: 2008-10-15
about the project Ban Rai village, in Highland Pang Mapha, is a village in the North of Thailand. The area was a site of intensive archaeological study between 2001 and 2006. In the nearby future the site will be managed as an open-air museum. In order to protect the sites on the long run, people need to connect to the heritage. Art is the best conceptual tool to link the past with the present and future, localization and globalization, the eastern and western cultures.
In the first half of 2008 the project ‘From (Different) Horizons of Rockshelter: Breaking through the Lines of Archaeological Methods, Phrases in Anthropology and Myths in Arts’ took place in this area.
In February a few hundred people from five ethnic groups came together to perform the traditional music and performing arts of each tribe. This took place during a seminar hosted by a group of Silpakorn University lecturers and artists. Silpakorn University is the leading Thai university in the fine arts and archaeology, located in Bangkok.
In April more than 30 local children took part in a series of music workshops arranged by Anothai Nitibhon, a new lecturer of Silpakorn University's Faculty of Music, together with, among others, her students. Anothai is trying to introduce a music programme that bridges cultural gaps in the village, as she did in 2002 and 2006 assisting a two-week music workshop for Serbian and Muslim children in Bosnia's Mosta and Sarajevo. All recorded sounds were mixed, modified and turned into a sound memo, which tells of the lives, legends and sounds of Ban Rai.
Afterwards the team prepared for the exhibition at the National Gallery, Bangkok, from June 13 to 30. They experimented new ideas, jammed with local musicians, and recorded live sounds. Inspired by the Phi-Man cliff paintings, the musicians and youngsters focussed their activities on the theme of shadows. During a workshop in the community hall of Ban Rai, some 30 children from different ethnic tribes painted each other's shadows in different postures and then posed according to their own pictures.
A sub-program of the project was a photo-project bij Vipash Purichanont, the 'Community Photography Project'. It started by sorting out participants from the villagers and by giving them cameras so that they could shoot 'anything' in spatiotemporal limit. Exhibited afterward, these photographs show the variety of ideas and objectives. But finally, all of the photographs assembled give a hint of the relationship harmoniously weaved between local people under cultural and ethnic diversity.
see also myvillages.org in Thailand index no.17.1.02