THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Roads and refrigerators

When art meets hotel CSR to raise traffic safety awareness

Sunday 31 July 2016, 12:00PM


Sean and Jim, with “D.O.A”.

Sean and Jim, with “D.O.A”.

Phuket-based artist Jim Newport first displayed his multimedia piece, “D.O.A” (Dead On Arrival), at the FREEZE exhibition at HOME art gallery and restaurant on April 9. The show featured works of art created from recycled refrigerator doors salvaged from Phuket junkyards. Thirteen local and international artists participated. Mr Newport arranged his doors to resemble the freezer doors in a morgue, which featured newspaper photographs and headlines, overlapped with heavy brushstrokes, and cross stripes of yellow-and-black warning tape. Clearly evocative of the results of road accidents, the piece aims to reflect on the annual carnage that occurs on the streets of Phuket due to reckless driving.
Over 2,500 children die and 75,000 are permanently injured each year in Thailand due to motorcycle accidents. Only seven per cent of children who are taken on motorcycles wear helmets, making Mr Newport’s art piece very pertinent to the overarching safety issues that millions across the country face due to questionable driving, unsafe roads and a lack of focus on the safety of individuals who are commuting.
Sean Panton, the Director of Corporate Social Responsibility for JW Marriott, saw “D.O.A” at the exhibition, and asked to use the piece for his Save The Children helmet campaign, and on June 17 at the JW Marriott Mai Khao, Mr Newport officially handed over “D.O.A.” to the Marriott Thailand. It is being used as a centrepiece with the Save Our Children campaign – providing crash helmets for Phuket’s children.
“I immediately realised that this would automatically give my message a much broader audience. When I went to the Marriott for the handover I was very impressed by the level of corporate responsibility Sean is able to instill into the hearts and minds of the employees. For instance, there is a policy that if an employee shows up for work without a helmet, they are sent home,” explained Mr Newport.
The Marriott has been involved with the Save Our Children campaign since October 2014. The campaign aims to raise awareness about road safety through helmet education, fundraising, and other activities at local schools. Sean’s programme has hosted eleven helmet-centred events and donated over 700 children’s helmets across the country. They have also painted road line markings at five local schools.
In the most recent iteration of this campaign, the Marriott hosted the launch of Save The Children’s 7% Helmet campaign (a clear reference to the helmet-less statistic) in November, and the campaign is expected to continue to grow.
Mr Newport’s art piece is, in many ways, very representative of how important artistic expression can be to catalysing interest and bringing to focus overarching social issues that make up contexts.
“Sean is making a difference and I am very happy to be a part of anything he is behind,” says Mr Newport, who adds that artistic support can be an intrinsic part of motivating social change.
Following this, Mr Newport is sketching ideas for a potential piece called “WALLS”, drawing attention to the blocking of the island’s beautiful views by the ugly walls used to conceal construction sites.
For anyone interested in further artistic insight, Home Kitchen on Kalim Beachfront is preparing their next show, “Knockoff”, for high season, to celebrate the culture that encompasses fake and counterfeit products.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Board vetoes ban on hazardous chemicals

Astonishing inability of reading and comprehending.No,it's not defending some careless handling ...(Read More)


Taxi blames oil spill for wipeout

This is funny, how can RTP charge a driver for this happening due to a oils spill on the road ( duri...(Read More)


Patong Police Chief: Leave your valuables at home

Who in their right mind (anywhere in the world) will leave a bag with that amount of cash unattended...(Read More)


Police probe launched after Chinese tourist suffers DCS in ‘try dive’

The outfit running the tour should have been fully aware of the existence of "SSS Hyperbaric Ch...(Read More)


Phuket Opinion: Fear and loathing in paradise

Should be no problem for people who want to retire in Thailand, they just have to prove (not claim) ...(Read More)


Phuket Opinion: Fear and loathing in paradise

And if a person, for a sanitary emergency or for an accident needs to use part of the 400,000 baht, ...(Read More)


Koh Kaew OrBorTor tackles roadside dumping

Municipal refuse collection and recycling locations should be provided by every municipality. Somewh...(Read More)


Dozens of street racers, promoter arrested in Bangkok

What is the legal setting in Thailand regarding drugs/urine tests out there? When is it voluntarily ...(Read More)


Chalong Underpass makes breakthrough

That structure in Chalong circle centre is to much. Very ugly and bombastic/pompous. Wait for the da...(Read More)


Dozens of street racers, promoter arrested in Bangkok

Are there no racing circuit areas in Thailand for this hobby? Organise races, have a police unit the...(Read More)