A Convenient Sunset | A Convenient Holdup
30.11.2019 - 19.01.2020
“There are approximately 10,268 7-Eleven stores in Thailand with an average of 11.8 million daily visitors (2019). 7-Eleven stores operate 24 hours per day and have become a common sight within the urban landscape.” — Miti Ruangkritya
BANGKOK CITYCITY GALLERY is delighted to present a solo exhibition of new work by Bangkok based artist Miti Ruangkritya, on view from November 30, 2019 to January 19, 2020. This exhibition marks the artist’s second presentation with the gallery.
The glare of colored neon from Thailand’s favorite convenience store chain–illuminated strips of orange, white and green anchored by a logo – is an image as ubiquitous in the Thai urbanscape as the daily sunset. In Ruangkritya’s new exhibition, the bright, crisp, hyper-vivid images of near-identical 7-Eleven stores taken during the golden hour arrive with an unlikely soulmate: a set of rough, grainy, pixelated CCTV screengrabs documenting robbery attempts of 7-Eleven stores by helmeted desperadoes, knife-wielding petty thieves or armed and hooded muggers.
The juxtaposition of the tranquil, properly composed photographs of the stores at twilight with the messy, newspaper-y images of those stores in their helplessness forms the conceptual backbone of Ruangkritya’s new show titled A Convenient Sunset | A Convenient Holdup. At once precise and dreamy, placid and absurd, inviting and eerie, A Convenient Sunset | A Convenient Holdup teases our expectations, provokes interpretation, and above all hints at the inevitability of chaos even in the environment as controlled and manufactured as those brightly-lit stores frequented by almost every Thai every day.
b.1981, Bangkok, Thailand
Lives and works in Bangkok
A nobility of beauty can provoke a disturbing reality, Ruangkritya’s work has proven its capacity when audiences are put in the middle of beautiful ordeal. Raised in the UK, and returned to Bangkok in 2010, the artist noticed the city’s increasing urbanization and started documenting its rapid changes. He has produced immaculate photography focusing on the urban city, its development, and impact. A subtle sarcasm has also informed his commentary work on politics.