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AC433 Field Trip at Bang Sai Royal Folk Arts and Crafts Center

Written By Tevin Thiplueporn, BBA #23
On November 10th 2017, our class of AC433 has had the pleasure and honor of visiting the Bangsai Arts and Crafts Centre. Our class was warmly welcomed by the people working there as well as their trainees currently undergoing the arts and crafts courses that the centre offers.
Bangsai Arts and Crafts Centre is a foundation endorsed by our majesty the Queen Sirikit. The primary objective of the centre is to promote supplementary income for farmers, agriculturalists and people with low income by educating and training them in various arts and crafts, such as ceramics, sculptures and embroidery. What they hope to accomplish is not to create jobs by having the trainees continue to work for them, but rather create capable individuals who have the ability to pursue their own work after completing the training courses and possessing a level proficiency in their craft.
An example of what the trainee could pursue would be a mechanical or steel/metal sculptures trainee who could use to pursue a profession in metal working after completing their courses. Of course, if the trainee wishes to use their skills at the centre, they can certainly do so by becoming a professor or expert for one of the courses, in which they will earn a salary from the centre.
Throughout the walkthrough of the centre, we were shown about the facilities and the activities that goes on day-to-day regarding their training courses. We were able to see the trainees or students at work, working on their pieces and projects. An interesting thing to note about how the centre handles their production, from the courses and from the production process, is the fact that they give free reign in terms of creativity to the ones working on a particular piece. Of course, newer trainees would be given more specific projects as a part of their education, but once they have gained a level of proficiency, they are able to create their own designs or patterns with little intervention from the professor.

We were also able to learn about the processes behind each piece, such as how sculptures are made from start to finish. It was fascinating to see how the products we see in stores or at conventions came to be and hear about how much effort, time and expertise were required before a piece could be completed. It’s also interesting how the trainees are given free reign over their own projects and production, but the centre still maintains a formal system to regulate their activities in an organized, yet unintrusive way. An example of this would be the acquisition of additional materials to continue their projects. The trainees must ask the professor in charge before acquiring such materials, and the professor would keep track of how much is left, how much was taken by whom, and when they should submit a request to obtain more materials.
The centre certainly has many more interesting locations and exhibits to show, and one can certainly learn a lot about Thai culture while enjoying the wonderful scenery of the centre. Additionally, there are also other locations for leisure, such as the aquarium and the bird sanctuary, where one can see Thai species of fish and bird up close. When given the chance, we would definitely love the visit the centre again.

Posted date:  November 22, 2017 by Sochaya T.