The mural was completed on Saturday Apr 9, and following its completion, local residents took to social media to either severely criticise or praise the design. (See story here.)
In attendance at today’s meeting, held at 10am, were Phuket City Mayor Somjai Suwansupana, local media, residents, government officials and Wirachai Pranveerapaibool, leader of the “So Phuket” group who were part responsible for the mural being painted.
Speaking during the meeting, Mr Wirachai said, “Following the first meeting held last week, I have decided to ask Pattcharapon ‘Alex Face’ Tangreun to paint over his mural on the side of the old Standard Chartered Bank Building.
“Mr Pattcharapon will paint over the mural himself between May 5-15,” he said.
“I understand that there are several opinions about the mural and about art in general,” he added.
Mr Wirachai went on to say that the mural on the old Standard Chartered Bank building is part of a collection of 12 murals being painted on various buildings around Phuket Town and that the project will continue until all 12 are complete.
“This project will go on until all 12 paintings are finished. Only four – including the one on the old Standard Chartered Bank – have been finished so far. Once all 12 are complete the artists will speak more about the project. This should be in October,” he said.
Kanokpan Pranveerapaibool, another member of the So Phuket group stood up after a man (who wished to remain anonymous) raised a question regarding where the funds came from for Alex Face’s mural and said: “Part of the budget is from Mr Wirachai’s own pocket. We think about Phuket Old Town and hope that more art will appear there soon. This is a part of street art and it should be part of Phuket’s future,” she said.
Asked about the budget for the entire project, Mr Wirachai stepped in and answered, “This is from donations for people who want to support “F.A.T. Phuket” (Food, Art, Old Town). It is not from Phuket City Municipality.”
However, he declined to reveal the amount.
Mayor Somjai told attendees about discussions held about removing the mural and said, “I regret having to delete the mural on the old Standard Chartered Bank building. I know the “So Phuket” group wanted to do for Phuket.
“We will have to be more thoughtful when we consider other project of this nature and will will set up committees to discuss them,” she said.
“Thank you everyone, thank you,” Mayor Somjai said, clearly upset by the issue.