See a Kaleidoscopic Array of Works on View in Southeast Asia’s Largest-Ever Exhibition of LGBTQ Art

Danh Vō, Anne Samat, and Dinh Q. Lê are among the participants.

Christopher Cheung, Dress Reheasal (2017). Collection of Sunpride Foundation. Image courtesy of artist.
Christopher Cheung, Dress Reheasal (2017). Collection of Sunpride Foundation. Image courtesy of artist.

Thailand has a well-earned, but not so well-examined, reputation in Asia as a bastion for liberality when it comes to its views about LGBTQ issues. Now, a monumental new exhibition, “SPECTROSYNTHESIS II – Exposure of Tolerance: LGBTQ in Southeast Asia,” will bring 59 LGBTQ-identifying artists to the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, making it the most expansive contemporary survey of queer art in Southeast Asia to date.

Organized by Hong Kong’s Sunpride Foundation, the far-reaching exhibition aims to bring together a broad intersection of contemporary Southeast Asian artists along with artists of Indian and Chinese descent, to showcase the diverse perspectives and visions that compose the region’s queer communities. 

The exhibition will also include several new commissions by artists including Arin Rungjang, Jakkai Siributr, and Balbir Krishan. Malaysian artist Anne Samat, a wunderkind of woven art, has created Rise Of The Phoenix (2019), a nearly 10-foot rainbow-colored assemblage of woven materials that delves into the societal and artistic idea of the “ideal form.” Danh Vō’s pivotal sculptural work We The People (2011–16)—a to-scale recreation of Statue of Liberty then fragmented in 300 pieces⁠—will also be on view.  

“What makes this show so powerful and critical is the fact that most artists are personally involved or can identify with the issue. More crucially, the dialogue is about the freedom that art offers: the expression of the individual struggles for gender recognition and formalization; the battles fought for human rights; and winning respect among peers,” said Chatvichai Promadhattavedi, the show’s lead curator. 

“What excites me most about this exhibition is the passion from everyone, and such passion translates into a very powerful and critical presentation,” said Patrick Sun, Sunpride’s executive director. This will be the second iteration of the exhibition organized by the LGBTQ awareness group Sunpride Foundation. The first was held at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Taipei in 2017.

Hear more from the show’s organizers and participating artists and see images below: 

Truong Tan, Beginning of a Dynasty, 2013. Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Truong Tan, Beginning of a Dynasty (2013). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Piyarat Piyapongwiwat_mou_chin Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Piyarat Piyapongwiwat, Mou & Chin (2012). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Dinh Q Le_Gay Mixed #4_2018 .Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Dinh Q Le, Gay Mixed #4 (2018). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Sudaporn TEJA (LGBTQ Prologue snapshot) Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Film still from Loves Get Better with Time Quietly (2019) by Sudaporn Teja. Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

 

Martin Wong_Mi Vida Loca_1991 Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Martin Wong, Mi Vida Loca (1991). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Sornchai Phongsa Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Sornchai Phongsa, Ka Luk Hai (Self Portrait) (2018). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Balbir Krishan_After 377 Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Balbir Krishan, After 377, Love Equally, Love Freely, Love Proudly (2019). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

Sri-Lanka_Lionel-Wendt_Untitled_nude_1938 Collection of Sunpride Foundation Image courtesy of artist.

Lionel Wendt, Untitled (1938). Collection of Sunpride Foundation, courtesy of the artist.

SPECTROSYNTHESIS II – Exposure of Tolerance: LGBTQ in Southeast Asia” will be on view at the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre from  November 23, 2019 – March 1, 2020.


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