Saturday, January 09, 2016

"Paint the Neon Night: Seeing in the Dark" - Bangkok Eyes Piece on Chris Coles Recent Bangkok Show and Paintings........

Ten years ago this month, Midnight Hour opened with "Chris Coles' Noir Persepective", a piece on up-and-coming expressionist painter Coles.  Our article was motivated by the sudden and growing interest in Coles' paintings immediately following his successful showing at Liam's Gallery in Pattaya. Last month we revisited this ongoing success story - Chris Coles, his exhibits and his paintings.
One corner of Chris Coles' showing at Brainwake Cafe Gallery in January
By coincidence, while we were in the drafting stages of an 'update' story on Chris Coles, we received an invitation from him to attend his 'opening' at the Brainwake Cafe Gallery at the back of Soi 33 Sukhumvit.  Made to order - we would definitely be in attendance.
Candid shot of Chris Coles at the Brainwake showing.
The turnout for Chris Coles' Brainwake exhibition was somewhat greater than anticipated; a number of reporters representing large and small publications, 'local' expat writers and a 'poet' or two, in addition to several members of the expat population that had purchasead a 'Chris Coles' in the past. Last, but not least, were the expats and local customers on the Brainwake who were drawn to the showing like moths-to-the-flame by their own curiosity.

A 'Chris Coles" painting we at Bangkok Eyes are quite fond of. In fact, we were so 'fond-of' it, we purchased it and placed it front and center in our News Room. We never knew the name this painting. So we call it 'Predator'.

Over the last ten years, the demand for Chris Coles' paintings has been on the increase.  A number  of local restaurants and other Nitespots have a 'Chris Coles' hanging somewhere in a prominent position (Check Inn 99 and Baccara Bar Soi Cowboy, for example).  Many in Thailand's expat community also have a Coles' painting up at home, and will note conversationally, "Oh, yes, I already have a 'Chris Coles'.
Another photo from the Coles' exhibition at Brainwake.
While Chris pursues other themes from time to time, it is his Nightscene Epxressionist canvases which capture both the viewer's imagination and the reality on the ground.  Often a single Chris Cole' canvas will capture the neon/black-light/chrome-pole frosting on the cake - and the darker grunge of the cake itself. Chris Coles...."the painter who sees in the dark". Chris' works are original, unique and have carved a permanent niche in Bangkok's Nightlife Scene.
The Check Inn 99 has three 'Chris Coles' paintings hanging within. This one, 'Crazy Hour', partially obscured by a customer, is located at the end of the bar.

Not that Chris Coles' paintings have taken off like Bligh Dolls or Luk Thep Dolls or Krispy Kreme donuts - Chris will just have to wait for the 'intangible', that unknowable element that causes something to 'go viral'.  Those of us who know Chris have told him in jest that he would have to fake his own demise before his paintings would be sought by the rich-and-famous, the renowned galleries, the famous auction houses.....

A rendition of a young lady many imagine they once knew.....

An out-take from the Bangkok Post heralding the Chris Coles outing at Brainwake...

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