In 1963 Professor Chalood Nimsamer made a name for Thailand in the international print circle for the first time when he won a prize in the International Biennial of Graphic Arts, Ljublijana in Yugoslavia. The following year he collected another major award in the International Biennial Exhition of Prints in Tokyo. Prof Chalood, it can thus be said, became the first print artist from Southeast Asia who won such international recognition. His achievement sinee put Thai artists on the map of international printmaking.
In 1966 the Faculty of Painting and Sculpture, Silpakorn University, began of offering a Bachelor's degree programme in graphic arts. with Prof Chalood at the helm of the newly-lounded department. A few years later its graduates began collecting international awards. This trend increases until it becomes known that prints by Thai artists are on a par with those of their Japanese and South Korean counterparts.
Over the years, several instructors in our department have won many international awards. Some hold degrees from the United States, Japan and Germany. And through them, the department becomes part of the golbal network of print artists.
Such interconnection is highlighted through this exhibition, which is named "Connect". Each of the eight instructors is thus assigned the task of inviting one print artist they know, admire or respect, from either Thailand and abroad, to exhibit their works alongside his own.
Acharn Pishnu Supanimit in vites a US-based Thai artisl Kamol Tassanachalee. Assoc Prof Kanya Chareonsupkul asks her former instructor Prof Michael S. Miller ol Department of Printmaking, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Asst Prof Thavorn Ko-udomvit invites Prof Walter Jule of Printmaking Division, Department of Art and Design, University of Alberta, Canada. I myself invites Assoc Prof Hirokazu Yamaguchi, his academic counsellor from his days at Aichi Prefectural University of Fine Arts and Music. Acharn Phatyos Buddhachareon invites a Thai artist in America Noppanat Soonthornsawad. Acharn Surasi Kusolwong chooses Hans-Ulrich Obrist, a wellknown curator frorn France. Acharn Sitthichai Pratchayaratikun invites an artist he admires from Poland Jerzy Jedrysiak.
In addition, the exhibition will showcase works of Prof Prayad Pongdam, two artists-in-residence from Japan, and four of the department's guest instructors. Altogether, there are approximately 60 pieces of works by 23 artists on view.
"Connect" is the third exhibition featuring works of the department's instructors, the first one heid in 1995. It's part of our effort and realisation that our mission does not lie just in teaching, but also in developing a global network of goodwill arld support with fellow artists elsewhere, as weil as in creating works of quality that will touch, and connect us to, those who appreciate this form of art.