Writer for the Life section
Kaona Pongpipat is a writer for the Life section of the Bangkok Post.
The Thai arts scene has become more politically engaging in the past couple of years. The 2014 coup, of course, has been the most significant transition point in this respect. Before, it was very much about making sense of the colour-coded divide, trying to get into the mentality behind such ideological conflict. In the post-coup era, however, it can be said that the ideas and interests have become somewhat more unified. Artists have become increasingly aware of and responded more to the authoritarian power and the climate of fear and rights restriction.
Ten million baht was the sum that 81-year-old Waraporn Suravadi, the caretaker of the Bangkok Folk's Museum, needed to buy the plot of land next to her museum, which was to become the site of an eight-storey building. That construction project could potentially spoil the view and atmosphere of the museum -- a well-preserved war-era teak house that displays rare and valuable items dating back more than 100 years, to the reign of King Rama V.