Manit Sriwanichpoom

Photographer and social activist, Manit Sriwanichpoom, is best known for his Pink Man series and This Bloodless War. His focus is mainly on globalization and its effects on his home country, Thailand. I met Manit during a class last year at Objectifs. Unfortunately, I didn’t really have a chance to talk to him as I was crashing the class!

© Manit Sriwanichpoom
© Manit Sriwanichpoom

© Manit Sriwanichpoom
© Manit Sriwanichpoom

© Manit Sriwanichpoom
© Manit Sriwanichpoom

Pink Man is my upset and alienated feeling towards the concept of consumerism which has been accepted simply and without consideration by Thai society. I feel that this system has enslaved us without our realization.

The Pink Man wears a fluoroscent pink suit wandering in Thailand, Europe and even historical photos. He pushes an empty (pink) shopping cart that makes him stand out from his surroundings. The insertion of the Pink Man in historical photos may appear to be tasteless but Manit wanted to raise questions to the Thais: were deaths of those students in the name of democracy worth it? This is even more prevalent in the wake of the military coup in Thailand.

© Manit Sriwanichpoom
© Manit Sriwanichpoom

© Manit Sriwanichpoom
© Manit Sriwanichpoom

Once, empires were carved out by armies. The same old people still colonise the world today, but now they call themselves global investors. As the ancients said, “When the lake dries up, the truth emerges.” It is only now that the bubble has burst and our currencies have collapsed, that we can see how the market system works to enrich and protect the old, existing colonial masters, at our expense.

In an older series, This Bloodless War, Manit recreated historical photos from the Vietnam War and the Japanese invasion of China. The images speak about the blind consumerism that has ravaged the Thais. Made after the 1997 Asia financial crisis, Manit wanted to show the chaos that was spreading through Thailand at that time.

There’s an interview with Manit here (albeit politically charge, in my opinion). The page also contains interviews with James Nachtwey, Steve McCurry and other cool stuff.

Read more about Manit here, here, here and here.