Ms. Marisa Chearavanont, Chairman of Chef Care Foundation (CHEF CARES) and advisor to the Charoen Pokphand Group, is the founder of the Thai Art Initiative. Her hard work and dedication has helped to reveal the Chef Cares Foundation. It is supported by Charoen Pokphand Group, and has become a determining factor to push and promote Thailand soft power. The primary focus’ are art and cuisine, helping to maximize economic benefits and connect Thai culture to the world. Chef Cares Foundation set up the Thai Art Initiative (ThAI) project with the hope of making Thailand the Asian hub for contemporary art. The project recently took part in the exhibition and collaboration of two female Thai artists; Jay Fai – Supinya Chansuta or Jay Fai, a famous street food chef from Chef Cares, and Kavita Wattanachayangkun, a new generation female artist. The two completed their collaboration by representing Thai culture the at Novecento Museum, Florence, Italy. Mr. Tharit Charungwat, Secretary General of the Thai Foundation, and Mr. Siripakorn Chiawsamut, Deputy Governor for Marketing Europe, Africa, the Americas, and the Middle East, Tourism Authority of Thailand attended this event and have received positive feedback and appreciation from artists, art collectors, and attendees alike.
RIMASCIMENTO+ 2022 award was awarded to Marisa from the Novecento Museum, a coveted honor given annually to art collectors and contributors around the world. This award focuses on the growth of contemporary art and the bringing it to the forefront of the international art market. Marisa is the first individual from not only Thailand but the whole of Asia to receive this award. She is active in promoting the contemporary art industry domestically as well as internationally. Serving on the committee that chooses contemporary artists from the Asia Pacific region for exhibitions at the New Museum in New York and the Tate Modern in London, she is also a co-founder of the recently launched M+ Museum in Hong Kong.
As the founder of the Thai Art Initiative (ThAI), Ms. Marisa said that the contemporary art community has profited from this award and shows that Thailand is seen favorably by those working in the art industry. It is a great sign which will help Thai contemporary artists and the Thai art industry create further momentum on the global stage. Collectors who support the Thai art scene and also provide the artists with the motivation to produce their works are a key ingredient in moving this niche forward.
Marisa has been dedicated to ensuring that the Thai Art Initiative (ThAI) is established with the aim of putting Thailand on the geopolitical map of contemporary art in Asia. Thailand has numerous unique cultural customs that set it apart from other nations. While its tourism industry is among the best in the world, it is important that other aspects help to promote and develop additional components aiding in Thailand’s soft power initiative. ThAI recognizes this distinction and effort to uphold Thai cultural traditions and strengthen its national image by enhancing Thai soft power on the international scene by emphasizing the presentation of Thailand’s regional identity, including Thai cuisine and contemporary art.
“Thai cuisine and contemporary art will be a significant economic driver. Asia’s culinary epicenter is Thailand. Our Thai chefs are like artists. We take great delight in how unique Thai cuisine is in each area and this has gained acceptance and recognition on a global scale.
Marisa is satisfied in achieving the coveted award at the Museo Novecento Art Week in Florence, Italy. It is the first goal of the Thai Art Initiative (ThAI) which featured two of the most inspiring Thai women. First, street food queen Jay Fai – Supinya Chansuta, age 74, offers everyone the famous crab meat omelet menu. Jay Fai has dedicated half of her life to crafting exquisite food as art. Jay Fai’s performance with Kavita Wattanachayangkun, a human rights artist. An art exhibition titled “Body, Labor, Consumption” was presented through selected videos from the series of “Performing Textiles” and “Field Work” which featured the fashion industry and female labor. The artistic collaboration of two Thai female artists and the upcoming artworks from the Thai Art Initiative will express the aesthetic and cultural spirit of Thailand.
Supinya Chansuta AKA Jay Fai expressed her gratitude for the chance to attend this event. She stated that every time she cooks in a foreign country, she gives her all to show that properly prepared Thai food can become well-known and more widely consumed because Thai cuisine is enticing and distinct. She hopes that this occasion could attract more foreigners to try the taste of Thai cuisine.