ATTA GALLERY, THAILAND’S FIRST GALLERY SPACE SPECIALIZING IN CONTEMPORARY ART JEWELRY TURNS SIX WITH AN EXHIBITION OF WORKS DEPICTING JUST HOW FAR THEY’VE COME.
Atta Gallery is the first and only gallery in Thailand specializing in contemporary art jewelry – and now for six years standing, congratulations! Has the function of the space changed much since its onset?
Atty Tantivit: Thanks! It’s been quite a journey for us. The function of the space has changed a little bit I would say. At the beginning we focused mainly on educating the market as well as students in the field. Back then we curated our exhibitions to show a wide range of contemporary jewelry so that people could understand more about the field and what is available out there. Nowadays, we curate based on our tastes as well as the tastes of our market. We show what we think might work commercially. ATTA Gallery, while still serving as an educational space, has to make our style clear to our customers as well as has to be able to make a profit. At the end of the day we are not a non-profit organization, we are a commercial gallery.
How would you describe the contemporary art jewelry scene in Thailand and in what direction do you see it moving?
AT: The scene is still very niche. Even though we have universities teaching jewelry design here in Thailand, not many graduates go into contemporary jewelry field. So now we only have about a handful of active contemporary practitioners and also a handful of collectors. But I am positive that the field will grow…slowly but steadily and hopefully sustainably. With a few Thais furthering their studies and practices abroad now and with us starting to show abroad, it will be just a matter of time before the Thai contemporary jewelry field gains more momentum and visibility internationally.
Could you introduce ‘Six: the sixth anniversary exhibition’ and a few of the artists whose works are included?
AT: With our 6th Anniversary, we have asked our gallery artists and artists that we have worked with or will be working with in the near future to give us one “piece” of jewelry that represents the word “SIX.” We have 32 artists participating in this exhibition. For example, Katja Prins from the Netherlands created a brooch that signifies the growth of ATTA Gallery, with six resin-covered pearl units for each of the six years we have been in operation, while Jiro Kamata, a Japanese artist who works in Munich, Germany, created a minimalist bangle with 6 silver rings. A local artist, Rudee Tancharoen, made a ring in the form of a number 6 in the Thai numerical system. These are just a few examples of what are included in the exhibition. A local newcomer, g’s, works in a more conceptual way based on his personal realization at the age of six.
Looking back, any memorable moments at Atta, or perhaps happenings that became pivotal moments in your now 6-year-history?
AT: Hmmm, it’s hard to say if any particular exhibition had put us on the map per se…but I think having brought an exhibition that we curated with a local curator Bow Wasinondh, Anew Negotiation, to be exhibited with Bilk Gallery in Australia last year was a big step forward for us. It was the first time that we got to hear and see responses and reactions of others towards Thai contemporary jewelry. And of course, being present at Schmuck Fair earlier this year has shown others that we are serious about contemporary jewelry and we are here to stay.
And, looking forward – hopes, plans and goals for the next upcoming 6 years?
AT: I would like to take it step by step…to grow steadily. It is one of my goals though to really make a mark here in Thailand. I would like for people to think of ATTA Gallery when they think of contemporary jewelry in Thailand. I plan to work towards making ATTA Gallery a must visit spot for tourists searching for a unique “shopping” experience. Moreover, I am working hard to make ATTA Gallery known among locals, both Thais and expats. I want for ATTA Gallery to be top of mind when they look for unique pieces of wearable art…both for their special occasions and for their everyday use. I hope to see more and more people feeling comfortable adding contemporary jewelry to their styles and lifestyles in the next 6 years.