Onnalin Lojanakosin On Privacy and Paint
Onnalin Lojanakosin speaks fondly of growing up in the UK and the influence of the teachers who fostered her artistic talent, reflecting happily on the countless hours she spent meandering through museums and galleries admiring the works of Kollwitz and Rembrandt and hundreds of other artists across multiple genres and disciplines.
Graduating with a master’s degree in Fine Arts from Central St Martins, London, Onnalin also earned a bachelor’s in Communication Arts from Camberwell College of Arts. Taking a different tack from her family’s business—Thai bedding company Lotus—instead she established Seasons, a luxury furniture import and Fine Arts business, which she ran for several years as managing director before deciding to return to the Florence Academy of Art in Italy. There she honed the technical skills of drawing and painting in the academic tradition—skills that are evident in her colourful paintings today.
Some of Onnalin’s latest pieces can be seen alongside the works of Thai artists Yuth Suripong and Noppanan Thannaree at ARTIST + RUN Gallery Thailand in an exhibition titled Solitude. It takes viewers on a tranquil and melancholic journey into tangibly timeless landscapes that show the unique individuality of the three artists and their sense of observation.
What was your inspiration behind this series?
I went to the sea and painted my first seascape. I found it really mesmerising, the way the colour changes throughout the day, and I ended up doing a whole series of seascape. The sea is formless, a coloured atmosphere, and I thought this was a very challenging thing to push. It taught me how to convey mood through colour.
What is your vision for this exhibition?
I didn’t have a particular vision in mind during the process. However, I am quite proud of bringing paintings that focus on aesthetics into the limelight again—today you seldom see paintings that purely convey aesthetics. I want our work to be like a breath of fresh air.
Your favourite piece in the collection?
I’m proud of all of them. They’re akin to a diary, records of the trips that I made in that moment in time. Most were painted on-site, although some were finished in the studio. I see them as snippets frozen onto a canvas. I love how the first one is a sunrise and the last one is a sunset.
Why did you choose Noppanan and Yuth as your co-exhibitors?
I love them as people. They both have beautiful souls. We also share similar views regarding the language of aesthetics; the three of us have a common interest in conveying beauty and nature in its raw and dynamic form. It’s really special working with people you have a good relationship with because there’s no jealousy, there’s only support.
What challenges have you faced mounting the exhibition?
Just getting the right pieces together was a trial. People often think painting is a highly pleasurable pastime, like a walk in the park, but it’s not. I throw out 60 per cent of my work because I have very high standards. It was honestly a painful process from start to finish, but it wasn’t a negative pain. Nothing is easy when you make it your career.
Why did you choose ARTIST + RUN Gallery?
I’ve known the owner, Angkrit Ajchariyasophon, for a long time. He watched me grow as an artist and I trust him to put on a spectacular show. He’s a very enthusiastic and passionate person when he works and that’s an important quality to look for when choosing someone to represent you.
What are your plans for the future?
I have another group exhibition planned, but I’m currently working towards holding a solo show. This may take another year to arrange though because solo exhibitions require a diverse body of work.
See also: 5 Bangkok Exhibitions Not To Miss This Festive Season