Published on January 11, 2008
The brainchild of artist Thavorn Ko-Udomvit, Ardel is a spacious and bright gallery with a high ceiling, where everyone in the art community wants to show their works.
Opened last year with the money that Thavorn says "should have been saved for my children's future", Ardel is a popular space with both artists and art lovers. It has a two-year waiting list of would-be exhibitors.
"Running a gallery has always been one of my dreams, although it's a significant risk in terms of my financial status," explains Thavorn, who is internationally known for his print-making works.
"But I wanted to have a gallery that wasn't too commercially driven, a space where artists with fine works could exhibit their creations," Thavorn says. "It would be great if their pieces sold, but money mustn't be the whole purpose. We want to survive in the art business and we also want to share the good works artists strive to produce with the public."
Ardel is part of a housing community and occupies two buildings on a large plot. The gallery is a vast 180 square metres. Ardel was hosting "Art of the Coffee Table", an exhibition by 12 Thai and 12 Japanese artists who created art on tables as well as to hang on the walls. Each show lasts about six weeks.
"When artists see my space, they all want their own exhibitions," says Thavorn, an associate professor in Silpakorn University's Faculty of Painting, Sculpture and Graphic Art. "Our space offers a lot of room for creativity. The gallery can also support all types of displays - from paintings to installations and even sculpture and seminars."
Thavorn's works have earned him international recognition and awards. He's travelled as a guest lecturer to Japan, Canada and the US.
At Ardel, he acts as curator, screening applications from artists, and footing the bills to publicising the events and print brochures.
"I can be a Da Vinci," he says as he shows us the portfolios of Ardel's activities.
"My emphasis is on the artistic values of the works. I want to establish credentials for new artists who aspire for higher position in the Thai art world," he says.
Ardel's exterior is suited to exhibition of sculptures and other large artworks. Thavorn is active in organising workshops and seminars that he hopes will lead to wider recognition of the arts.
Thavorn holds workshops for children and occasionally classes for adults. There's a small coffee corner serving drinks and snacks, including waffles and sandwiches, overlooking the lawn.
For more reviews, see www.ohsirin.blogspot.com.
Ardel Gallery of Modern Art
99/45 Belle Ville, Boromrachachonnanee Road, Km 10.5
Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 6.30pm; Sunday, 9am to 5.30pm
(02) 422 2092
Sirin P Wongpanit