The ‘altarpieces’ of Natee Utarit


Ayala Museum, Richard Koh Fine Art bring works of contemporary Thai painter to PH

Ayala Museum and Singapore-based gallery Richard Koh Fine Art, with the support of the Royal Thai Embassy in Manila is co-presenting the exhibition of contemporary Thai painter, Natee Utarit.

The Annuniciation,’ oil on canvas, 287 x 308 c.m. (2016)

Titled Optimism is Ridiculous: The Altarpieces, the exhibition is part of the artist’s Optimism is Ridiculous series, which began in 2012 and has been featured in various galleries in Asia.

Natee Utarit (born 1970 at Bangkok) studied at the College of Fine Arts in 1987 and graduated in Graphic Arts at the Painting and Sculpture Faculty at Silpakorn University, both in Bangkok, Thailand in 1991. His work is part of many renowned collections, such the Bangkok University, Bangkok, Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore, as well as private collections in Europe and Asia.

‘Nescientia,’ oil on canvas, 290 x 387 c.m. (2014)

The Altarpieces is Utarit’s critique of Western modernism. It is a satire of modernism and capitalism, and tells of its seduction of local customs and traditions. Consisting of a total of 12 works, these works are composed of multiple panels forming adiptych, triptych, or polyptych, following the tradition of classical religious paintings with elaborate frames and settings.

Utarit’s interest in Western religious painting stems from his appropriative approach to classical art. “In my paintings here I offer an interpretation of the world and various beliefs that appear in the Western world from my own Asian perspective,” he says.

‘Theater of the Absurd,’ oil on canvas, 250 x 540 c.m. (2015)

After its run in Manila on April 9, the exhibition will head to Indonesia and Singapore.


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