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Details
DAMRONG WONG-UPARAJ
(Thai, 1936-2002)
Shore Scene with Boats, Rocks and Scaffold-Like Poles
signed 'Damrong'; dated 1961 (upper right)
oil on canvas
79.5 x 147.5 cm. (31 1/4 x 58 in.)
Painted in 1961
Provenance
Acquired from the artist by Faye G.Y Stone
Thence by descent to the present owner
Private Collection, USA

Lot Essay

One of the most prolific Thai artists practicing during the 1950s and 60s after graduating from the prestigious Slipakorn University, Bangkok in 1936. He also continued his studies in fine arts at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, and the University of Pennsylvania. He has tended to infuse the Buddhist philosophies of peace and transcendence through his works, and his subject matter usually revolves around local rural scenes.

His scenes are often presented without little or scarce presence of human life - a characteristic feature of the artist's work, and allows for the uninhibited appreciation of the landscape. In Shore Scene with Boats, Rocks and
Scaffold-Like Poles (Lot 365), the artist displays an aesthetic with elements of cubism and abstraction as he depicts the intertwining of the manmade landscape with the natural. The sharp silhouettes of the poles by the water cut through the landscape, but remain in tune with the jagged peaks of the distant rocks in the horizon.

Damrong Wong-Uparaj is an artist whose work can trace its lineage to the wide trajectories of Western art history, perhaps indebted to the long period of time he spent overseas. In Street Scene in Bangkok (Lot 367) and the double-sided Still Life of Flowering Plant in Short
Round Pot (recto); & Geometric Abstract
Forms in Deep Perspective (verso) (Lot 366), he executes an application of paint in a distinctly impressionistic style. Retaining elements of the Western fathers of modern art in Picasso, Monet and Van Gogh, Damrong's distinction as an artist lay in his continual experimentation and mastery of various techniques and mediums for painting.

Working also in the medium of paper, Damrong further explored the concepts of minimalism and abstraction on a smaller scale. They can be seen as vignettes of the artist's journey and exploration of the differing art forms, as well as a ceaseless desire to thoroughly understand the history of art through its dedicated practice.

His work has been exhibited in notable international exhibitions in London, France, Florence, New York, Philippines, India, and Singapore.

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