A short trip from the centre of Chiang Mai to Ne'-Na Contemporary Art Space in Mae Rim calls to mind Basho's haiku poem Narrow Road To The Deep North. As we rolled down the pleasant path towards the gallery, we realised how art can be ironic: as it tries to get closer to ordinary life, it insists on its extraordinary quality. When it works, it leaves an impression.
Ne'-Na Contemporary Art Space opened earlier this year, an extension of its original space in the suburbs of Chiang Mai, which was established in 1998 by a group of Swedish and Thai artists led by Shukit Panmongkol in collaboration with the Monfai Cultural Centre.
Ne'-Na held an open house last Saturday, and guests were impressed by the well-designed wooden houses in its compound, the feast of authentic northern fare and some typically sweet northern receptionists dressed in traditional costume. Besides culinary delights there was also an audio treat.
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