Hidden in a little sub soi of Vabhavadi-Rangsit Road, at first glance, Sumphat Gallery looks like a home more than a working space. Entering the gate, you will be greeted by plant shelves surrounding a long table which serves as an unofficial gathering place and workshops. The first floor of the building is dedicated to Philippe’s photographs and some of Rush’s furniture creations while the second floor serves as the office. During our last visit, Rush and Philippe shared about the concept of this design studio and their lives as professional and life partners.
For the Love of Indiana Jones
Rush: “Me and Philippe, we lived our childhood life and we actually shared one dream, which is a dream to be Indiana Jones. We were thinking about how to combine the love that we have, between traveling, working and photography altogether. And finally, we decided it was that dream that we had when we were kids that we wanted to pursue. The life of Indiana Jones. Going to small villages, meeting people, finding some crafts and antiques, that’s something we are interested. It made sense because I was working in industrial design before.”
Passion Comes First
Philippe: “I came from Paris, France. I was born in the 60s in a family, part of which Part of which were artists in Paris and the other part were farmers. But everything came from my childhood and where I was. And the older I get, the more important I realize it was. Being a teenager in the 60s – 70s in Paris, Europe, I embraced everything in politics, in art, in music. With all kinds of music there was at this time, so you absorbed everything. My parents are intelligent. They said to me that “Philippe, whatever you do in your life, you only have to love it. Try to find something that you have passion and enjoy it.”
The Essence of Sumphat
Gaspard: “In Thai, Sumphat also means “touch”. But “touch” is coming in different forms; by the eyes when you have a contact with something, hands when you touch an object, or by your tongue when you encounter some flavors. When touching something, you have memories of sensations.
You remember something because you see it, taste or feel it and because it is not perfect. If everything is perfect, it is plain. You cannot get any attention on the object. We are the furniture designer and object designer that have worked with lots of crafts, because craft is something that gives sensations. So Sumphat is about the sensations that come from the essence and beauty of nature.”
Philippe: “Our private, professional, our artistic lives are always mixed together. Gaspard (Rush) is an architect, while I’m a photographer. Apart from being an architect, he is also a furniture designer. We are happy about our Sumphat collaborations. It has everything we are, from furniture pieces to my photography of the forests and the woods. The mixture of everything gives a good idea of how Sumphat Gallery was born.”
Photos & VDO: Palakorn Ratchanipon