Pratchaya Phinthong

Portrait

Born in 1974 in Ubon Ratchathani (Thailand), lives and works in Bangkok (Thailand)

“I’m interested in how things are made and how they are read. In this case, I simply show a series of pictures of a decaying billboard, but in fact the images are produced in the maintenance of an absence of content, rather than being assigned a subject for the sake of it – not telling a story but rather, asking what story should be told. Despite the acute tensions in Thai society today, the political desires and cravings of certain groups also generate these moments of suspension and inertia. The silences imposed arbitrarily by the ruling powers compound the society’s frustration and depression. So the empty billboard projects multiple images. In Bangkok, among other advertisements, it’s just an abandoned billboard, empty and unused, to which nobody will pay attention. But in fact, the billboard is a site generating sequential images, as if invisibly occupied by the Biennale. In Lyon, meanwhile, the billboard becomes a single, time-lapse image, standing for the steady accumulation and « eternal return » of silenced time. It would be interesting to show the two projects at the same time. While « Mobile Cinema » would animate various spaces around the venues, the billboard carving out an image of silence. » (Pratchaya Phintong)

 

Ephemeral Cinema, 2004

Ephemeral Cinema is an electric car designed in 2004 by the Thai conceptual artist Pratchaya Phintong for the exhibition "Here & Now" in Bangkok. It raises the question of the function of the art world in relation to the real world. The sculpture remains inside the Sucrière during the day (to recharge the battery) and turns into a mobile cinema at night. Starting from two different points (the contained space of the museum and the open expanse of the city), Pratchaya Phintong offers us the choice of linking those two realities while, at the same time, emphasizing the space that separates them. The contained area of ​​the museum thus encounters the open expanse of the city. On its nocturnal peregrinations during the Lyon Biennale, the Ephemeral Cinema projects works by Babette Mangolte (There? Where?, 1979), Perrine Lacroix (Winfred, 2013) and Robert Breer (Fuji, 1974). In complete contrast to his mobile mini-cinema on wheels, the artist also presents Reality Ripple, an image of silence screened at the Sucrière.

With backing from the gb agency, Paris

 

Reality Ripple, 2017

Thai artist Pratchaya Phintong places the question of space at the centre of his art. Through his works, he seeks to connect different places in order to take the measure of their similarities, their differences, their proximity to and distance from each other. Created for the Biennale, his work Reality Ripple creates a link between Lyon and Bangkok. In Thailand, the work seems to amount to no more than an abandoned billboard, empty and unused – a reflection of Thai society, suffering from the silence imposed on it by the powers that be. "But in fact," says the artist, "the billboard is a site generating sequential images, as if it were invisibly occupied by the Biennale. In Lyon, meanwhile, the billboard becomes a single, time-lapse image, representing the steady accumulation and “eternal return” of time reduced to silence."

 

©DR

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