Gaining clarity through abstraction
PHUKET: Surat Thani native Watcharin ‘Nui’ Rodnit has a dream – that is probably technicolour and abstract in visuals – to make Phuket Town the artistic hub of the island.
Friday 31 August 2012, 06:03PM
A major and crucial first step to realising it is to turn the eternally vacant and ironically-named ‘Lucky Complex’ that has never actually managed to open, into an art museum.
Speaking from his art studio in Phuket Town, Nui said, “I think the government could help a lot more and promote local arts more. Krabi has its own museum even though it is tiny compared to Phuket.”
It is for this reason that he along with other members of the recently formed Chino Art group are asking for a budget from the local authorities to turn his dream into reality.
However Nui’s aim doesn’t end there. “There could be art structures all over town, it could be a reason for people to visit Phuket Town.”
Some of his ideas include a giant crab statue, a giant sea horse and many other strange and wonderful structures dotted around Phuket Town.
Until that time, Nui is quite content on burrowing away in his studio and teaching children and young adults the finer points of artistic expression. He is quite qualified to do this as he himself was a child artist.
“I started [art] when I was six years old, it was in a lesson at school and we were asked to draw the exterior of the building. I remember I stayed outside long after everybody else had finished and gone back inside. It was very hot that day, but I didn’t care, I enjoyed drawing. I knew straight away that that was what I wanted to do.”
The studio is also Nui’s home and it has a wonderfully relaxed, vibrant and fun feel to it. Huge abstract paintings adorn walls, sketches hang on doors and weird ornaments take pride of place around the room.
Much of Nui’s work is inspired by scenes of nature and the environment and although he does do a lot of lifelike and still life portraits, much of his fabulous work nowadays is abstract.
This change of style he traces back to the moment his sister died in a car accident. In perhaps a way of dealing with those confusing emotions, he created a huge 5x15 metre ‘abstract’ piece.
Nui still does the huge pieces, one of which he is doing commercially in a sort of homage to the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
“A client of mine has commissioned me to do this piece here,” he says gesturing to a huge 5x5 metre piece.
“She wanted me to do it so that she could better remember her Italian husband who recently passed away. When it’s finished it will go on the ceiling of their Italian restaurant in Patong.”
Nui is a member of the Chino Art Group, a group of 10 Phuket town artists with the common aim of promoting Phuket Town art around the island and Thailand.
From September 29 – October 7, the Chino Art Group will be putting on the ‘Abstract 2012’ exhibition at the Jungceylon shopping centre in Patong.
“As we would like to one day have our own museum, we are actually hoping to make this a reality through exhibitions like these.”