Connect with us


Alex Face unfazed by the controversy surrounding his painting

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: Alex Face, the artist who painted the controversial mural depicting a three-eyed child on a wall of one of the city’s most historic buildings, the Peranakan Nitat (Baba) Museum in Phuket Town, is set to remove the artwork today.

The Thai artist, whose given name is Patcharapol Tangruen, has been commissioned to paint buildings all over the world, but this is the first time, to his knowledge, that one of his murals has had to be removed.

He agreed to remove the mural himself amid public outcry following its unveiling on April 10. Through social media, residents criticized the artwork’s placement at what was formerly the Chartered Bank, the only international bank in Phuket and a marker of the island’s period of industrialization.

Criticism of the project was also leveled at municipality support for the project through an engagement organization called So Phuket.

Old Phuket Town Community president Don Limnunthaphisit said that community members were shocked to see the painting appear on one of the city’s most historic buildings.

“The core of this problem is that people are questioning why modern art is painted on the side of a 100-year-old building. It’s simply in the wrong place. It’s like forcing a 100-year-old person to get a tattoo. I am personally not against the art. I’m glad people enjoy taking photos with it and would have suggested that it stay there for another three months so people could enjoy it before it’s removed” said Mr Don.

“However, the authorities have made their decision so I’m fine with that,” he added.

The mural was initially approved by Phuket City Deputy Mayor Kosol Tang-Uthai. During a highly charged debate at Phuket City Hall, chaired by Phuket City Mayor Somjai Suwansupana on April 12, Dr Kosol, who is also the former president of the Thai Peranakan Association, admitted that although he backed the plan to paint parts of the old town, he was unaware that a mural would be painted on the museum wall and offered to hand in his resignation over the ‘miscommunication’.

Alex was unruffled by controversy and said he was happy to remove the art himself.

“I have been working in this field for more than 10 years and in that time I have seen a lot of things, good and bad. Sometimes people who disagree with my work chase me away even before it’s finished,” he said.

“I understand the issue here in Phuket. I have no problem removing my art, but what I do not quite understand is why the authority and other relevant people did not talk before it became an issue,” he noted.

He said he planned to make the removal of the mural another piece of artwork in its own right by making a stop-motion movie. However, he did not reveal how he planned to remove it.

“I spent a lot of time researching Phuket culture. I always study the places where I will work. In this case, I’d say I have done my job. The issue is among others, not me,” said Alex.

“I will say that working in Phuket has been one of my most impressionable experiences. The art did its job. It forced people to talk and resolve issues.

— Chutharat Plerin


Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand12 hours ago

Thailand News Today | AoT warns about tourist exuberance, easing of restrictions | June 22

Coronavirus (Covid-19)13 hours ago

CCSA: Bars to stay closed for now, drunk customers risk the spread of Covid-19

Bangkok14 hours ago

Woman dies after jumping from Phra Khanong BTS station in Bangkok

Phuket Sandbox July 1st


Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

263 covid cases linked to canned seafood factory in Songkhla

Drugs14 hours ago

Narcotics Control Board announce recent drug busts, heroin and cocaine sent by mail

Environment15 hours ago

3 Cambodian activists arrested for plotting against the government/insulting the king after documenting waste run-off

Chiang Mai15 hours ago

Chiang Mai eases restrictions, alcohol now allowed at restaurants

Thailand15 hours ago

Angry ex allegedly sets motorcycle on fire in school parking garage

Cambodia16 hours ago

6 arrested in Cambodia for allegedly trafficking people into Thailand

Coronavirus (Covid-19)16 hours ago

Tuesday Covid Update: 4,059 new cases; provincial totals

Thailand17 hours ago

Power outages coming to Kathu

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 hours ago

Samut Sakhon governor calls for more vaccine doses after order was cut

Thailand18 hours ago

Fruit buyer arrested for allegedly using counterfeit certificates to export durian

Tourism19 hours ago

Airports of Thailand president says tourism won’t pick back up until October

Thailand19 hours ago

Mobile sterilisation/vaccination truck helps Pattaya’s cats and dogs

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8