Bundith Phunsombatlert, Returning Dialogue: Fragments of Blue and White Porcelain (2017)
- digital printing transfers on fragments of blue and white porcelain displayed in an archival clamshell box, 16 x 27 x 2 inches.
As regular readers of this journal know, the judging of the Prix de Print is done “blind”—the juror is given images and artists’ statements, but the artists remains anonymous until the selection is made. I was drawn to this curious object for the Prix de Print because of the way it layers print technology in a format not automatically associated with printmaking. As it happens, the artist—Phunsombatlert Bundith—was also selected just four months ago as the winner of Prix de Print No. 35, for Sunny Garden in Blue: Stories from the Caribbean to Brooklyn (2018) a series of lush cyanotypes that sets personal stories of migration amid portraits, plants and flowers. Phunsombatlert, who was born and educated in Thailand before coming to the United States, regularly uses printmaking processes in his sculpture, installations, and public art works. He is also in the habit of putting digital technology in the service of more antiquated, historically rich means of production—cyanotype in the case of Sunny Garden; transfer-printed porcelain here—to consider cultural migrations across time and space.