Rock Around Asia Opening @ Imperial Queen's Park Hotel, Bangkok
"Rock Around Asia", a photographic essay of Southeast Asia off the beaten track by French photographer Eric Monteil, was opened in the lobby of the Imperial Queen's Park Hotel in Bangkok on March 9th 2012.
Eric took the images while touring the region on a motorcycle, the first time he had ever ridden one in his life. He found himself with time on his hands and planned the endeavour by public transport before considering the two wheeled option, and although many of his friends thought him crazy for undertaking such a venture without prior motorcycle experience, set off regardless.
The exhibition features striking images in colour and black and white depicting the people and sights he met along the way.
Words and photos by Paul Hutton, Bangkok Scene.
Slum Child Care Foundation Vice President Khunying Wongchan Phinainitisatra cuts the ribbon to launch the exhibition aided by Imperial Queen's Park Hotel General Manager Michal Zitek and photographer Eric Monteil.
Eric covered 22,000 kilometres in the space of seven months with the aim of experiencing the "real and wild Asian way of life, first in Vietnam, then Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Indonesia and later Burma."
He said "After a few days in Hanoi I bought a motorbike to save my life from dangerous drivers there. Yet, I had never driven any motorbike before in my life, and I did not even know how to drive on two wheels, and manage gears, change a flat tyre or cross borders."
The trip proved to be life changing for Eric, who fell in love with the region and now runs his own establishment, also named "Rock Around Asia", in Sukhumvit 45, Bangkok. Eric calls the venture "a house dedicated to arts, culture and creativity." It acts as a contemporary art gallery, museum, photo studio, open air cinema and bistro.
Imperial Queen's Park Hotel General Manager Michal Zitek takes a look around the exhibition.