When you combine the techniques of traditional artisans with the direction of some of Bangkok’s most creative minds, magic is bound to happen. Last month, we had the honour of joining SACICT (The Support Arts and Crafts International Centre of Thailand) and 56thStudio on a visit to local craftsmen and communities in and around Chiang Mai to witness this for ourselves, as we discovered that Thai craft is still very much thriving and alive thanks to projects like Thai Innovative Craft.
For this project, some our favorite Bangkok-based designers were assigned to modernize Thai handicrafts based on 5 different materials: Wood (by Thinkk Studio), Metal (by Trimode Studio), Wicker (by Plural Designs), Textile (by Trimode Studio) and Ceramic (by Pim Suthikam). Each designer teamed up with local craftsmen and communities around Thailand to work on new, innovative designs using traditional techniques and materials, sharing valuable knowledge and creative inspiration in both directions.
Thanks to projects like these, Thai craft is no longer limited to the terrain of trite souvenirs and outdated home-decor, but enters the stage of contemporary home design and modern lifestyle accessories, meeting the demand of today’s consumers. It’s fascinating to see how handmade products from a far-flung moo baan can fit in so well with the everyday life of a modern metropolis.
In order to preserve traditional craft, craftsmen have to innovate. Projects like these provide a platform to build a collaborative network to further develop innovation, share knowledge, generate income for the local community and grow the impact of Thai crafts in a responsible and sustainable manner.
The project is documented and told by 56thStudio with the support of SACICT.
SACICT /งานหัตถกรรม /งานหัตถศิลป์ /ชุมชนหัตถกรรม /ช่างฝีมือ/ครูศิลป์/ครูช่าง/ทายาทช่าง