Jakkai Siributr: Matrilineal


Jakkai Siributr


Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani


Conceived in continuation of 18/28: The Singhaseni Tapestries (2018), a series of embroideries centered on the passing of Siributr’s mother, Matrilineal at 100 Tonson Foundation, Bangkok, hinges on two main concepts: the importance of giving voice to minor narratives from the past by acknowledging their memories and legacies; and the awareness of the impermanence of life, tightly woven into the universal pain of loss and bereavement.

Framed in this context, Matrilineal marks a first for Jakkai Siributr, in many ways.

Foremost, Matrilineal is an exhibition about the essence of womanhood, intended as a gendered perception. Expanding his ongoing focus on social issues, with Matrilineal Siributr emphasizes the role of significant female figures in his family vis-à-vis the hardship and sacrifices as a shared condition among women in a patriarchal society, regardless of rank or social status. Matrilineal is, therefore, a predominantly intimist exhibition, realized through the artist’s own observation of his relationship with his mother, aunts and grandmother—figures that have shaped him into the person he is today and that have now passed, thus no longer able to tell their stories. As such, the exhibition furthers Siributr’s evolving interest in existential notions of ephemerality and grief, as well as the therapeutic power of art-making.

Known for his iconic use of embroidery, stitching and quilting, Siributr is one of the most notable practitioners of textile art—an artform traditionally considered to be gendered-specific. In further exploring the female-driven approach of the show through this medium, Matrilineal presents an entirely new body of works made exclusively from reassembled and repurposed garments, textiles and personal objects that belonged to the significant women in the artist’s family.

Unearthing their memories and, thus, remembering their lives as women and makers of home and family, Matrilineal is conceived as a tribute to his loved ones by way of chronicling history’s minor narrative within Thai patriarchal society. To do so, Siributr presents an entirely new body of works based on his family heirlooms, ceramics, and tapestries. From large textile installations, embroidered intimate portraits, to reinvented vintage garments through beading and stitching, these works feature his mother and her sisters, and his grandmother in retrospection, reflecting on their personal journeys and legacies. Archival objects and paintings of the artist’s family are featured with the new embroideries, culminating in the presentation of specifically designed floral arrangements to underline notions of ephemerality and longing, sentiments that connect us as human beings in the circle of life.

This exhibition will be on view at the Foundation from November 30, 2023, to May 26, 2024. During this six-month exhibition period, the Foundation will offer a variety of monthly public programs. These programs including Memento Mori, Ikebana, and Kintsugi workshops. The first, “Memento Mori,” an embroidery workshop, will take place at 100 Tonson Foundation on December 16, 2023. Conducted by Jakkai Siributr, this workshop invites participants to approach loss and bereavement through communal sharing, embroidering and sewing on garments that belonged to their loved ones, to create a memento mori keepsake as a reminder of mortality while reinforcing the healing power of remembering; an Ikebana Workshop led by the invited floral artist, Mattana Snidvongse, to encourage reflection on the ephemeral and transitory nature of life – sentiments that form the framework of the exhibition; a Kintsugi workshop conducted by Sumanatsya Voharn, providing a meaningful experience to engage with the philosophy of Kintsugi while remembering and beholding the past; and a conversation with Professor John Clark and Jakkai Siributr, moderated by Loredana Pazzini-Paracciani. Finally, the launch of the 'Jakkai Siributr: Matrilineal' catalog, which encapsulates the essence of the show and situates Siributr’s practice within its social, historical, and artistic context.

About the artist

Jakkai Siributr

Born 1969,Bangkok Thailand.


Jakkai Siributr is known primarily for his textile and embroidery works, and his installations increasingly offer an element of audience participation. Siributr is concerned with the unofficial histories that have been written out of Thai account as well as intersections between personal and regional histories. He creates a delicate tension between his subject matter — ongoing conflict driven by nationalistic discrimination against minorities — and the visual sensuality of his chosen form and materials.  More recently he has begun to work with various communities through embroidery workshops including refugees on the Thai-Myanmar border and the USA. He also worked with the Thai Government on a social developmental program in remote areas of Mozambique. Studying and residing in the USA for nearly ten years, Siributr earned his BA in Textiles/Fine Arts, at Indiana University Bloomington in 1992 and MS in Printed Textile Design at the Philadelphia University in 1996. He was an instructor at Thammasat University’s Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts from 1996-2003.

His exhibition history includes: Garmenting: Costume as Contemporary Art at The Museum of Art and Design, New York (2022), 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Centemporary Art (2018), Bangkok Art Biennale (2018), Dhaka Art Summit (2018), PATANI SEMASA, MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum (2017); DISPLACED, Bangkok Art and Culture Centre, Bangkok, Thailand (2017); First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco; Transient Shelter (2015); Viewpoints and Viewing Points – the 2009 Asian Art Biennial, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (2009); and ArtPosition, Murten, Switzerland (2005); among others. His work is included in the collections of the Singapore Art Museum; Asian Civilization Museum, Singapore; Queensland Gallery of Art / Gallery of Modern Art, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art; Asian Art Museum of San Francisco; the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, USA; and the Vehbi Koc Foundation, Istanbul, FENIX, Rotterdam, Netherlands. The Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textiles ( CHAT/The Mills ) will present his first major survey in November 2023.



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