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Chiang Mai – 20 August, 2017 at MAIIAM Contempory Art Museum. David Teh‘ s new book THAI ART; CURRENCIES OF THE CONTEMPORARY is the first scholarly study of current artistic in the kingdom since Apinan’s landmark Modern Art in Thailand (1992). Rather than covering that 25-year gap – a survey that could easily fill another book – Teh offers a more focused account of the ‘currencies’ Thai artists have acquired in their engagements with the international art system. Not so long ago, a ‘history of contemporary art’ would have seemed like a contradiction in terms. But contemporary art is a moving target. Its vitality as economy and discourse now demands its own historical framing. What insights might we take from such a study? Is it simply an explanation of the presents, or can it open new lines of enquiry about the past? In Chiang Mai, the author will introduce some of the book’s key themes, in dialogue with Chiang Mai-based artist and critic, Thasnai Sethaseree.

Devid Teh is a curator and researcher based at the National University of Singapore. His essays have appeared in Afterall Journal, Third Text, ARTMargins and Theory, Culture and Society, and his book Thai Art: CURRENCIES OF THE CONTEMPORARY was published this year by the MIT Press and NUS Press. His recent curatorial projects have included TRANSMISSION (Jim Thompson Art Center, Bangkok, 2014) and Misfits: Pages from a loose-leaf modernity (Hausder Kulturen der Welt, Burlin, 2017).

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