Members of the public have been invited to visit the exhibition "The Supreme Artist” in remembrance of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The exhibition is taking place at the Ratchadamnoen Contemporary Art Center on Ratchadamnoen Klang Avenue in Bangkok.
Organized by the Department of Cultural Promotion, Ministry of Culture, the event will run until 27 January 2017. It features His Majesty the late King’s achievements in nine artistic fields. The achievements by a number of national artists have also been on displayed.
Recognized for his wide-ranging talents in many artistic fields, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej paid special attention to the preservation of all forms of Thai arts and helped promote people’s interest in them. He was given several titles; one of them is the "Supreme Artist.”
The late King’s interest in arts began early in life while he was studying in Switzerland. His achievements in nine artistic fields include architecture, handicrafts, literature, rhetoric, painting, sculpture, photography, performing, and writing music.
His Majesty King Bhumibol created more than 100 paintings. On the occasion of the Bangkok Bicentennial Celebrations in 1982, the Fine Arts Department was granted permission to exhibit 47 of his paintings in a month-long exhibition. It was the first time in Thai history that a solo exhibition featuring paintings created by a monarch was held.
His Majesty explored techniques and found sculptural inspiration from art books, learning modeling, casting, and mould-making. He was also interested in casting Buddha images. In 1966, 100 bronze Buddha images were made from a prototype created by His Majesty and they were sent to be enshrined in various provinces across Thailand.
He took a keen interest in creating works of art and giving support to artists and artistic creation. In his many speeches, he urged the people to join hands in preserving Thai arts and culture passed on from generation to generation.
On 24 February 1986, when Thailand first celebrated its National Artist Day and the first batch of national artists was honored, the Office of the National Culture Commission conferred upon His Majesty the King the tile "Supreme Artist” in recognition of his great contribution to Thai arts and artists. In his speech given on National Artist Day in 1986, His Majesty King Bhumibol said that art is crucial for all kinds of work and that artists are important persons deserving recognition and honor.
Later, on 20 March 2007, the Cabinet approved a proposal by the Ministry of Culture to confer the title "Supreme Patron of Thai Cultural Heritage” in recognition of his contribution to the conservation and promotion of Thai culture and in commemoration of the celebrations of the 60th anniversary of his accession to the throne in 2006.