Natee Utarit’s remarkable journey into the realm of contemporary art reaches its zenith with the Déjà vu series, an exploration that transcends cultural boundaries, historical narratives, and the interplay between artistic mediums. The presentation at West Bund Art & Design 2023 promises to be an immersive experience, inviting attendees to engage with the complex dynamics of identity, cultural synthesis, and the artistic process.
At the heart of this presentation lies a selection of artwork from Utarit’s Déjà vu series, each piece meticulously interweaving the techniques of painting and embroidery. Utarit’s artistic evolution towards embroidery is eloquently encapsulated in his artist statement, where he reflects on his journey, inspirations, and the convergence of Eastern and Western paradigms.
The intricate embroidery works on display are drawn from Utarit’s late 2019 exhibition titled “Déjà Vu”, held in Naples, Italy. These pieces are a manifestation of Utarit’s deep-rooted fascination with embroidery and tapestries in Christian art, a fascination that took root during his Altarpieces period approximately six years ago.
Utarit’s profound connection with embroidery as a form of narrative is evident in the evolution of his practice. The journey reached its crescendo in the Déjà vu series, specifically the “Déjà Vu: Your Past Is My Future” series of 2019, where he deftly integrated embroidery into his creative repertoire. This integration was born from encounters with Western tapestries from the 16th century and the compelling fusion of embroidery and painting seen in the artworks of Central Asia’s Tibet.
The essence of the Déjà vu series lies in its reimagining of Eastern and Western paradigms, challenging conventional notions of time, space, and culture. Embroidery, in this context, serves as a conduit for traces and personalities of the past. Utarit’s artistic process involves harmoniously uniting various mediums, much like a conductor orchestrating an ensemble. His integration of embroidery and other mediums creates a unique visual language that thrives within the interstitial space between painting and sculpture.
The series is divided into three distinct groups, all intertwined seamlessly in terms of time and space. The first group pays homage to Italy’s classical architecture, while the second delves into the past lives of The Lord Buddha. The third group captures moments and places associated with The Lord Buddha’s journey to the West. This amalgamation of themes, rendered through the delicate fusion of mediums, forms the crux of Utarit’s artistic expression.
Utarit’s innovative use of embroidery introduces a multi-dimensional viewing experience, altering the way audiences interact with and perceive his artworks. The interplay of light and thread generates dynamic visual effects, inviting viewers to engage with the pieces from diverse angles. This aligns seamlessly with the central concepts of the Déjà vu series, which delve into the intricacies of time, culture, and inequality.
Richard Koh Fine Art’s participation at West Bund Art & Design 2023 underscores its commitment to pushing the boundaries of contemporary art and offering a platform for visionary artists like Natee Utarit. The presentation promises to provide attendees with an enriching experience that probes the nuances of cultural intersections, artistic dialogues, and the evocative power of embroidery.
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