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  • TRAVEL

    All packed up and many places to go

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 15/01/2012

    » Twenty or even 10 years ago, Western budget travellers would descend on the country, spending tens of thousands of baht on flights and then, to the bemusement of Thais, proceed to travel in third-class train carriages or buses to rudimentary guest houses on the beach or upcountry that cost 40 baht a night, where they showered out of buckets and shared dormitories with strangers.

  • NEWS

    Ghosts among the people

    Spectrum, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 22/01/2012

    » They come from Iran and Sri Lanka, Pakistan and China, central Africa, Cambodia and elsewhere around the world, fleeing persecution for their beliefs or serious concerns about their safety and that of their families.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Hills alive with the sound of music

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 19/02/2012

    » In a corner of Loei province so remote that the only mobile phone reception comes from Laos, robust opera arias and piano arpeggios ring out. It's not what you'd expect to hear in this typically tranquil spot near Pak Chom along the Mekong, but with the 11th Agalin music camp under way, the sounds of nature give way to those of the classics.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Finding freedom in fusion

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 04/03/2012

    » Last week, Chiang Mai-based artist Pakitsilp Varamissara had three exhibitions concurrently running in the capital, comprising some 200 works from a career spanning 30 years.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Living in an upside-down world

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 04/03/2012

    » Another exhibition organised as part of La Fete is an unusual series of photographs being displayed at the Bangkok Art and Culture Centre. In the images, a man wearing a black suit stands horizontally on a tree trunk, hangs suspended against the sky as a rope coils beneath him or leans over a balcony perpendicular to the Hong Kong skyline. What does it all mean?

  • NEWS

    Voices of the silent

    Spectrum, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 11/03/2012

    » Last Thursday was International Women's Day, an occasion that for a century has served for people to demand greater civil rights, representation and equality; to honour wives, mothers and girlfriends and the accomplishments of women; to call for an end to global hunger and poverty; and, increasingly, to highlight the plight of refugees and the displaced.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Saying it with smiles

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 18/03/2012

    » Western photography of Asia can be gritty, featuring people living in wretched conditions as a way to draw attention to their plights. But Thai photojournalist Bhanuwat Jittivuthikarn took a different approach to his subjects when he travelled the continent. "Yes there are many issues that require awareness, but I want to do it by showing a lighter side of humanity," he said.

  • LIFESTYLE

    Love pictured together, Standing apart

    Brunch, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 01/04/2012

    » At first Piyarat Piyapongwiwat's "Queerness", a series of photographs of couples, doesn't appear to be a gay art exhibition. The photos aren't a celebration of sexuality or an overt claim for rights. These are subtle and personal portraits; the relationships are not always immediately apparent and there is a timeless element to the compositions. As in a black and white photograph of your great-grandparents, the couples don't smile. They are posing, but not formally. The impression is of a quick window into the lives of couples, as they turn to look momentarily _ before resuming their lives. It's an intimate demonstration that same-sex couples are as loving and connected as any other.

  • NEWS

    Muay Thai strikes for Olympic glory

    Spectrum, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 08/04/2012

    » An eventful week for combat sports in Thailand culminated on Tuesday night at Lat Phrao's Bangkok Convention Centre with a showcase of muay Thai, Thailand's traditional martial art, for an international audience.

  • NEWS

    Supporters knocked for a loop by MMA ban

    Spectrum, Ezra Kyrill Erker, Published on 08/04/2012

    » Less than a week before muay Thai's application to the IOC and World Games, and a few days after Spectrum reported on a high-profile local mixed martial arts (MMA) competition, MMA was banned in Thailand by the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT) on the grounds that it was hurting the image of muay Thai. MMA is a discipline fought in an octagonal cage using any number of fighting and grappling techniques. To hone stand-up combat techniques, many international competitors train in muay Thai, and for years MMA fighters have been coming to train in the Kingdom.

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