Kamin Lertchaiprasert | Thailand b.1964 | Problem-Wisdom 1993-95 | Papier-marché (from recycled Thai newspapers) | 366 pieces: average height 14cm (each); 1400 x 200cm (installed, variable) Purchased 1996. | Queensland Art Gallery Foundation | Collection: Queensland Art Gallery
A committed Buddhist, Thai artist Kamin Lertchaiprasert is concerned with combining the creative process involved in art-making with the daily rituals and disciplines underpinning his personal beliefs.
Problem-Wisdom 1993-95 is a large floor-based installation consisting of 366 papier-marché sculptures. Lertchaiprasert sculpted each object in response to a problem affecting contemporary Thai society.
Every day for a year, he selected an article from a Thai newspaper, pulped the remaining paper and made a small hand-sized object that responded to the reported problem.
The following year, he systematically revisited each object and meditated on a solution. The solution (or wisdom) was inscribed in calligraphy on the object. Inherent in this work is the Buddhist and Daoist belief that everything in life ― good and bad, right and wrong ― exists in balance.
Lertchaiprasert uses the daily rituals of reading, meditation and art-making to bring this balance into being. The installation is a poetic contemplation of a meeting between Buddhism and contemporary Thai experience. It exemplifies Lertchaiprasert's process-based art practice as it overlaps with his life and philosophy.