Immerse yourself in the ancient Thai lacquer art of Lai Kammalor


An exhibition of lacquer art at The Peninsula Bangkok seeks to promote the cultural value of ancient Thai art and provide visitors with an immersive artistic experience.

The Peninsula Bangkok welcomes art lovers to discover the vanishing traditional lacquer-art technique of Lai Kammalor, with a special installation by acclaimed local artist and associate professor Niroj Jarungjitvittawat.

The exhibited works, collectively titled “Sati” (a Buddhist term meaning mindfulness or consciousness), have been commissioned as part of the hotel’s artist in residence programme, which is a collaboration with up and coming local artists to offer hotel guests “uniquely immersive artistic experiences”.

Lai Kammalor is a centuries-old painting technique that dates back to the Kingdom of Siam during the Ayutthaya period. The technique employs lacquer, gold leaf and powdered tempera to create elaborately patterned designs. These were used to adorn doors, windows, partitions and cabinetry in many of the country’s grandest historic palaces and temples, including Bangkok’s Grand Palace.

Niroj has made it his personal mission to preserve this distinctive artistic tradition through his own works.

“My dedication to Lai Kammalor goes beyond simply wanting to introduce this ancient Thai method to modern-day art enthusiasts or to my students,” said Niroj, who teaches art at Rajamangala University of Technology Rattanakosin.

Immerse yourself in the ancient Thai lacquer art of Lai Kammalor

“It is my way of promoting higher cultural values embodied in the approach – goodness, faith, truth – to viewers around the world.”

For The Peninsula Bangkok general manager Joseph Sampermans, the Sati exhibition offers guests a sort of “deeply engaging, culturally relevant art experience” that the hotel seeks to share with the artist-in-residence programme.

Immerse yourself in the ancient Thai lacquer art of Lai Kammalor

“Installations like associate professor Niroj’s fulfill an important purpose,” Sampermans said. “Not only do they surround our guests with exquisitely beautiful artworks and introduce them to local creators, they also connect our visitors with the vibrant culture of our home city and our home country.”

Sati is on display at The Peninsula Bangkok’s mezzanine floor and artist studio until December 30. Both hotel guests and outside visitors are welcome to see the exhibition.