Tada Hengsapkul (b. 1987, Thailand) works across a range of diverse media to investigate the tensions between control and dissent, establishing his practice as a mode of radical resistance in itself. First reaching critical acclaim for his photographic and video works, Hengsapkul’s oeuvre has long been underscored by extensive political research. Engaging with official archives, informal discourse, and popular media, he has sharply addressed the themes of nationalism, democracy, and military control. Though grounded in political history, his works are also intimately autobiographical, often citing personal relationships and sites from his hometown in Northeast Thailand that were affected by war and authoritarian power.
In recent years, Hengsapkul has pivoted towards a dynamic abstract approach, combining en-plein-air and pyrotechnic methods. Employing smoke bombs, fireworks, and gunpowder, the works allude to its materials’ centrality in global protest culture, forming provocative yet melodic imagery. Despite the variance of his chosen materials, his different bodies of work are united in their advocacy for freedom, agency and compassion.
Hengsapkul’s selected exhibitions include All is Prettier. Part II: Arrival, 100 Tonson Foundation, Bangkok, Thailand, 2023; The Answer is Blowing in the Wind, MAIELIE Khon Kaen, Khon Kaen, Thailand, 2022; Watch and Chill: Streaming Art to Your Homes, M+, Hong Kong, in collaboration with the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul; Museum of Contemporary Art and Design, Manila; MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum, Chiang Mai, 2022; Escape Routes, Bangkok Art Biennale, Bangkok, Thailand, 2020; The State of Motion 2020: Rushes of Time, Asian Film Archive, The Warehouse, Singapore, 2019; The 9th Asia Paciﬁc Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT9), Queensland Art Gallery, Gallery of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia, 2018.