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Irin Siriwattanagul / Nathaphon Phantounarakul
2.9.2022 - 4.9.2022

Irin Siriwattanagul and Nathaphon Phantounarakul have been investing in specific ideas between art and architecture, which are constantly oscillating between the possibilities and what has been done. Irin/Nathaphon operates based on the idea that architecture can facilitate intellectual development, expressing ideas that transcend its material and structural functions through the activities that the people activate. The essential aspect of their works is always about what could and would happen within the space.

For the exhibition 000, Irin/Nathaphon wants to activate the space and create a situation for casual conversation freed from certain attitudes or perceptions toward exhibiting objects. Therefore there are no objects on view except the architecture itself that -only for this very special occasion- we could pass through and ponder over.

About the idea and process of the architecture, Irin/Nathaphon began with an abstract form: clouds, which are animate forms constantly shifting in movement, and later they developed planes, which stay fixed, dictating the functional space. The initial function of STORAGE was merely to store artwork; therefore, they further developed the space to be dynamically shifting to expand its possibilities by utilising a flippable wall panel. The mechanical configurations create entirely different space conditions by enabling a possible walk-in space expanding from STORAGE’s closed display. Its display partially reflects on the idea of retail: a temporal display of goods in public in small quantities in transfer, hence its large window display, which allows the exhibiting to be extended beyond conventional operating hours of art spaces. For Irin/Nathaphon, their framework at length is fully completed by the inhabitants’ activation of possible activities.

Irin/Nathaphon’s drawing titled ‘let the cat out of the bag’ works differently than its architectural counterpart. While the architecture is more about how we interact roughly and directly with it, the fuzzy drawing is available to be taken by the audiences to contemplate carefully. The idea behind the reversed assembly drawing is to reset the existing conditions of the physical space and turn it back to the zero position before things could occur. The meticulous noisy lines form a cloud depicting volume instead of actual planes. By employing different scales and conditions, the artist generated clustered yet uniform lines; the bigger planes yield longer lines, while the shorter ones come from smaller planes. Irin/Nathaphon pays attention to the spaces in-between, explaining how the spaces could allow the occurrence of all kinds of events such as micro as wind going through or as big as a sizeable sculpture occupying the room. Seeing Irin/Nathaphon’s work might not be about the outcome but the opened possibilities.


About the artists/architects:

Irin Siriwattanagul and Nathaphon Phantounarakul (both b.1985) have been collaborating and working partners for a decade. They are the founders of sp/n, a Bangkok-based architectural design studio specializing in the intersection of a unique transdisciplinary design approach. The body of their works is situated between the fields of art and architecture. Each of their works aims to provide a unique spatial experience for its visitors while contributing to the visual identity of a place. Siriwattanagul and Phantounarakul have been pursuing research exploring the legibility and scalar accentuation of geometric forms in architecture. Their interests revolved around legibility in visual interpretation and translated into a delicate gradation of the medium in the building envelope, the ground as well as interior sub-division spaces.

Siriwattanagul and Phantounarakul are 2015 Städelschule architecture program graduates, specialising in the thematic group led by Professor Daniel Birnbaum and Professor Johan Bettum, 'Architecture and Aesthetic Practice' (AAP) alongside Beatriz Colomina, Mark Wigley and Ben van Berkel. They have been collaborating and working on multiple architectural and art-related projects, in addition to their experiences with European architecture firms, including Studio Tomás Saraceno in Berlin, 3deluxe in Wiesbaden, and Graft in Berlin. They have recently expanded their practice as visiting lecturers at Silpakorn and Kasetsart University. They currently live and work in Bangkok, Thailand.


Photograph: Atelier 247

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