Meeting the famous—all part of the job!
One of the best things about my job is that I get to meet lots of people. Some famous, some not quite so, some interesting, and some you'd prefer not to be seated next to at dinner! Well, last week I met some famous people. Remember Nick Ut, the Pulitzer prize-winning photographer who took the memorable picture of the young Vietnamese girl running from napalm fire during the Vietnamese War? He was in town for the opening of the Leica photo gallery at Gaysorn Village, with his works featured in the inaugural exhibition. This is Leica’s 19th gallery worldwide and only the fourth in Asia.
MCM x Eddie Kang (and Nam Jooh Yuk)
I also went to the MCM x Eddie Kang event at Siam Paragon where I met the Korean artist whose cute dog drawings in his signature animamix style are featured in an MCM collection. Unlike many artists, he is a very modest young man who was totally overshadowed by Korean actor Nam Jooh Yuk. Nam put in an appearance for maybe 15 minutes (in fact he flew into Bangok in the morning, rested at Siam Kempinski, showed up at the MCM event and went straight back to the airport after) but created total chaos among the zillions of waiting fans. There was such a huge crowd that you could hardly breathe, let alone move.
Meeting Arianna Caroli
I also caught up with Italian artist Arianna Caroli, well-known for her bold and bright flower designs. I had met her 10 years ago when Yuwadee Chirathivat, CEO of Central Department Stores, brought her to Bangkok to celebrate Central’s 60th anniversary. She conducted an art workshop, which I had the good fortune to attend. She is now back in town for an artist-in-residence exhibition at Central Embassy, which runs until February 18. Held jointly with L’Officiel, Arianna has allowed some of her prints to be made into limited edition bags and scarves, with part of the proceeds from sales going to Siriraj Foundation’s project in honour of HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s 60th birthday.
More Art Shows!
Another art event I went to last week was the exhibition organised by Lalisa Chongbarami of the Stream of the Arts Foundation at Siam Paragon where works by celebrated Thai artists as well as amateurs were on sale to raise funds. Guest of honour Thanpuying Pharani Mahanond presided over the opening attended by artists and celebrities. Suriyon Sriorathaikul generously bought up the paintings of his amateur friends. All for the sake of charity.
The Busiest Tuesday!
Last week, Tuesday was as busy as the usually frenetic Thursday. I went to three events that day. First was the FUZE pop-up store, where 20 young designers from the Institute of Design and Innovation’s Talent Thai and Designers’ Room projects collaborated in co-branding work with established designers Painkiller, Erb and Tao Hong Tai. It’s always a delight to meet the institute’s director, ML Kathathong Thongyai. Check out the creative products on the third floor of Siam Discovery until April 27. This was followed by a preview of COS (Collection of Style), a British fashion brand that offers reinvented classics and timeless designs, that is opening its first store in Bangkok at EmQuartier very soon. I love the organic shapes and minimalist designs using natural materials for the spring-summer collection.
The last stop was the opening of AIS’s new-look Serenade Club at EmQuartier. According to the VP of customer service management, Bussaya Satirapipatkul, AIS will be rolling out the new clubs for customers focusing on a five-senses experience at 20 locations.
Lingerie Preview in Preparation For VDay
With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, thoughts are turning towards romance, which is why, I'm sure, Triumph decided to open its new shop at Central Grand Rama 9 last week. Srocha Zbinden, commercial director of Triumph International Thailand, was on hand for the occasion, which also saw the launch of its new brand, Essence. Other than roses and chocolates, the next most popular gift from men to their girlfriends on Valentine’s is lingerie—certainly way more wallet-friendly than jewellery, that’s for sure!
Ending the Week in Khao Yai
The week ended with GranMonte’s Harvest Festival and Jazz in the Vineyard at Khao Yai. A classmate of GranMonte’s CEO Visooth Lohitnavy at Sasin Business School, I have been visiting the award-winning vineyard since its early days and am delighted to see it going from strength to strength, to his daughter Nikki, who graduated as an oenologist. I had a good lunch at the vineyard’s Vincotto restaurant, run by Visooth’s wife Sakuna, after which the grape-picking competition commenced. For those who didn’t want to participate, there were other activities including wine sipping—a much better alternative really. The jazz festival was held in cooperation with the Khaoyai Tourism Association and the TAT, and we had a good time eating, drinking and enjoying music under the stars around seats and tables made from hay stacks.
(See also: Naphalai's Diary: January 29-February 4)