I visited a showroom of a Thai company, called, “Yothaka”, which a small group of people. All products of this company are hand-made. Most of them are made by the water hyacinth vegetable (Pak Tob Java = vegetable slabs Java). They can make the people who use them, love them, and fell warm with their skins and colors. They are not just Thai-style furniture, but they are Asia-style which made from 90% Thai materials.
**In fact, most Asian countries have the same materials, so I should say, this products are Asian style from Asian materials.
Suwan Kongkhunthian is one of M.D. of this company. His life is really strange. He loves easy forms of the furniture and easy life. As an M.D. if this company, I can say that he has money to have flamboyant life styles, but he doesn’t want to be like that. All workers in his factory do not have to call him, “boss”, as other companies in Thailand. They are all friends together. He also can accept all people’s ideas, and respect them, although they are younger or lower in position.
His live seemed easy, just like a folk life, but with complex relationship and complex way to achieve.
– Complex relationship is the way he lives with his workers. He listens to all their voices, and he also solves their problems, although those problems are not company.
– Complex way to achieve is about how he developed his idea. He said that when he was a student, his professor inspired him and his friends to do complex things, which he had never liked, so when he had a chance to found this company, his products were easy forms. He also has a different idea from other Thai companies who are really nationalism. He loves Thailand very much, but he thinks that just Thai furniture is not enough for world trading. This is why he makes his products to be Asia-style.
I also like the way he named his company, “Yothaka”. It is an ancient Pali word with modern sound. The meaning is “need or want about shape, smell and taste”. He also named some products this way, too. All they sound easy but also with complex sources.
The easy forms of this furniture are the same, they are handmade weaving texture and the combination between national materials to be easy forms.
Just like the sky you can see at night, black background and white dots, but they hide their complexity with compound several forces, abundant energy and million of elements.
Mr. Kongkhumthian also said that Yothaka’ s products are more friendly than most industrial furniture. I want to add a reason that is the human are natural, and they fell friendly with the natural shapes and natural textures. This is not my new idea, but it is from Gaudi’s, one of the greatest architects and artists in the world.
You may visit Yothaka’s website at http://www.yothaka.com if you need the Yothaka’s furniture, you may call (66-2)-679-8628, (66-2)-679-8631, (66-2)-679-8632 and fax (66-2)-679-8965.
(66) is Thailand’s area code.
(2) is Bangkok’s area code.
If you are in USA, dial 011 for international call. I got an e-mail, but I think the telephone is easier.
All words and photos by Sw Eden