Sermkhun Kunawong as a Photographer
Sermkhun Kunawong had a passion in Photograph when he was the first year student in the Faculty of Mass Communication, Chulalongkorn University.
|In 1979||he became a university photographer who worked with Nisit-Naksueksa Magazine.|
|In 1982||he presented his street photo|
|In 1983||the photographs of antiquities and Buddha images in Bangkok National Museum.|
|In 1992||he started his contemporary works by the sets of photographs named “Rituals” and “Earth-Air-Water-Fire”.|
|In 1993||his photo sets named “Light and Shadow” and “Flying” were shown.|
|In 2006||he was selected as one of the seven royal photographers working in the occasion of H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s 60th Birthday Anniversary|
|In 2008||he had his first solo exhibition called “Symbol Stream Stone and Surrender” showcasing men and women in the nude by the form of installation art.|
|In 2011||“Khon Man and IIlusion” was his second solo exhibition which reflected the today’s society through the symbol of Khon masks, our roles and social status often come with a burden in the form of expectation.|
|In 2012||he organized his next solo exhibition. “Buddha Image Talks” which presents the aesthetic of a Buddha image by integrated technique with the super high speed shooting. So, what can be seen in the photograph is a spur of the moment image that can never be repeated and the exhibition was at the Bangkok National Museum.|
|In 2013||he came back with the idea to showcase the beauty of human body again by using the Buddhist inscription tattoos which reflect the Thai identity and reflective glass photograph technique for “The Blue Man”he came back with the idea to showcase the beauty of human body again by using the Buddhist inscription tattoos which reflect the Thai identity and reflective glass photograph technique for “The Blue Man”|
Photograph before 2008
During the 3rd -4th year student in Chulalongkorn University,
Sermkhun Kunawong started artworks in photography included street art and still life.
It’s about more than 10 years before the first exhibition.
Life in 1982
Ritual in 1992
Fly in 1993
Thai Spirituality in 2011
Symbol Stream Stone &
Symbol Stream Stone & Surrender is the first set of multimedia & photography which reflects the idea of the unity of human body and nature.
However, it happens that men act against women with confinement in all dimension. This set covers the black and white photography, collage and the mixed media presentation by combining photographic skills with passion in sculpture to create this set of artworks.
There are 41 photographs in Symbol Stream Stone and Surrender
Khon Man and Illusion
Khon Man and Illusion is a reflection of today’s society through the symbol of Khon Masks. Nowadays, our roles and social status often come with a burden in the form of expectation, not only from people in the society but also from ourselves. Our social status or the roles we play are just like the masks Khon actors wear to identify the cast each of them are playing. The roles or the masks are simply illusions. They are just the make -believe which are unreal, transient and will have to come to an end one day. Instead of bearing such burden throughout our lives, all of us should let go of our egos, arrogance and prejudice so as to experience the true happiness.
Khon Man and Illusion
There are 39 photographs in Khon Man and Illusion
Buddha Image Talks
Buddha Image Talks contains photographs of Buddha Images from the early period up to the present time and presents them via different techniques.
The photographs are divided into four sections: Sprinkling Joy, Applying Gold Leaves to the Back of a Buddha Image, the Radii of the Dhamma and Understand the Causes of Suffering, Enlighten the Dhamma. Each photograph has been taken with the camera shutter being pressed only once.
The composition of the picture has not been retouched nor has it been moved around. So, what can be seen in the photograph is a spur of the moment image that can never be repeated. This reflected the Lord Buddha’s teaching concerning the impermanence of all things that cannot remain the same but will be gone, like water being sprinkled into the air where control is not possible. The photographs have halted all movement. At the moment when gold leaves are applied to the back of a Buddha image, airy particle permeate the rays of light and concentration required in inscribing the letters that are connected with the Teachings of the Lord Buddha-all these signify my peace and happiness. Above all, if the aesthetic of the Buddha images in this collection of photographs becomes a tiny light that turns more people towards Buddhism, this will be my act of merit-making.
Gold leaves at the back
The radii of the Dhamma
Understand the Causes of Suffering, Enlighten the Dhamma
There are 54 photographs in Buddha Image Talks
The Blue Man
The Blue Man showcases the beauty of human body with the use of vivid colors. While photographing, sometimes I was so convinced that the models in front of me are ancient Greek sculptures. At that moment, I truly believe that human anatomy is one of the most beautiful art forms.
This set of photography is organized along three thematic sections. The first entitled “Body” portrays natural beauty of human body. Using basic photography technique, it highlights the idealized perfection of human body with the use of body painting technique on models with beautiful, statuesque bodies. The second part entitled “Mergence” reflects human instinct as social animals. The message was expressed through the superimposition of images of a man and a woman. The superimposition of shapes symbolizes spiritual connection. Inside a man, there is womanhood, and inside a woman, there is manhood. And magically, such spiritual connection eventually unites humans as one. To show such spiritual connection, I took multiple exposure shots with the use of reflection technique. I did this by using a transparent, reflective mirror sheet which not only can reflect the image of the object on its shiny surface, but, because of its transparency, when we shine a light on that object from behind the glass, another reflection will also be shown on the mirror’s surface. This technique may sound complicated, comparing to the convenient use of graphic art programs. However, I find it challenging and it makes me happy every time I saw the superimposition of reflections right in front of me. While doing so, you will notice the difference between blurred reflection and a clear vision of the object through the transparent mirror sheet. The third part entitled “Soul” showcases human desire to express their identity and gain recognition. In this part, I cannot help adding a flavor of traditional Thai culture which I have always been so passionate with. Yantra tattoos (Buddhist inscription tattoos) is a form of traditional Thai tattoo art believed to be magical and able to bestow mystical powers and protection to the wearers. Such tattoos symbolize human desires to be invulnerable, admirable, strong and powerful, or even possess some special characteristics of animals-in other words, the instinctive desires to express our greatness and gain recognition from others. I think all of us can easily relate with this feeling as deep down inside, everyone possesses such instinctive desires. With the projection of Yantra tattoo images on the models’ skin, the images were shapes in line with the limbs and contour of the body, symbolizing the passion for mystical power imprinted in human spirit.