Welcome to Mongolia and River City Bangkok is delighted to present "People and Their World: Tsam - The Dance of Gods", a photography exhibition that beautifully captures an enchanting narrative. Created by Jatenipat Ketpradit (JKboy), a Thai photographer deeply captivated by the tales of tribes and cultures. As an artist of immense global recognition, JKboy will guide you to unlock the gates of an ancient palace, over 300 years old, concealed amidst the deep mountains of Mongolia. Here, he invites you to experience the sacred and secretive ritual of venerating the ancient deity through masked dances, amidst the rhythmic verses and the aromatic allure of incense, aiming to banish all evil forces from existence.
The Tsam masked dance is regarded as one of the most significant rituals in Vajrayana Buddhism. It originated in the Tibetan region during the 8th century and evolved in response to geographical and societal changes. Over the centuries, the Tsam masked dance spread into Mongolia, intertwining with the dissemination of Buddhism and blending with Mongolia culture. This fusion has given the Khuree Tsam, the Mongolian version of the Tsam masked dance, a unique and distinct identity.
In this exhibition we immerse in a series of photographic artworks born from the collaborative vision of the world renowned photographer and the cultural envoy of Mongolia, JKboy (Jatenipat Ketpradit), and the esteemed Mongolian Mask Museum. The photographic series were masterfully captured during the midsummers of 2022 and 2023 in the Amarbayasgalant Monastery, the Mask Museum of Mongolia and several important cultural sites in Mongolia.
Through the visual narrative, we embark on a profound journey, one that unfolds the tale of a generation deeply committed to the preservation and perpetuation of the Tsam culture. In these scenes, across the generations, individuals convene within the sacred confines of traditional Mongolian yurts and temple settings. We bear witness to the masters passing down the intricate artistry of crafting Tsam masks and elaborate costumes to those disciples who embrace the sacred duty of upholding Tsam culture's timeless heritage. This is a voyage of legacy, a burden carried with profound sentiments and steadfast faith. Through the eloquent lens of imagery, these visuals reveal the eternal spirit of Tsam culture and the silent custodians of its cherished traditions.
Continuing the photographic storytelling, it transitions to a pivotal moment. Mongolian artists adorned in the resplendent attire of traditional Tsam dance, with masks that exude an aura of mystique and ancient wisdom. These artists, inheritors of an ancient legacy, stand poised and graceful. Every movement is deliberate, each gesture pregnant with symbolism. The audience is drawn into this mesmerizing dance, where time seems to stand still, and the boundaries between the earthly and the divine blur into a harmonious continuum. In this transcendent moment, the very essence of Tsam culture awakens, and we are invited to partake in its profound beauty and spiritual significance.
About the Artist
JKBoy or Jatenipat Ketpradit (born 1984), a professional photographer and adventurer who sets out to find the beauty of diverse ethnicities and cultures hidden in remote areas around the world.
Jatenipat is a photographer with special expertise in portraits and culture. He is able to tell the stories of ethnic groups that are diverse and different in language, culture, and way of life through his pictures in a beautiful and amazing way.
Jatenipat has dedicated himself to studying the cultures of various tribes by mingling and spending time with tribes around the world in order to understand their beliefs, and their way of life. He lives in harmony with the ways of the people in that locality so that people can open their minds, and convey emotions naturally. He also founded "People and Their World", a photographic project used as anthropological evidence, to record history and tell the beauty of culture. It is also a voice for forwarding messages that various tribes want to communicate to the outside world.
information provided by event organizer