Yimsiri, Khien (1922–1971) By Chotpradit, Thanavi
Khien Yimsiri was a pioneer of modern Thai sculpture and an influential teacher of sculpture at Silpakorn University, Bangkok. Born in Bangkok, he graduated from Rongrian Praneetsilapakam (School of Fine Arts, now Silpakorn University) in 1941.
In his early career, he won prestigious awards at the National Exhibition of Art and received scholarships to study abroad. In 1949, Yimsiri studied under the guidance of Henry Moore at Chelsea College of Art and Design in London. He was also exposed to European modern art during his scholarship at the Academy of Fine Arts of Rome from 1953 to 1954. The revival of traditionalism in Thailand during 1940s and as well as Yimsiri’s work at the Fine Art Department provided him with the chance to explore Thai cultural heritage. Buddha Statues, spiritual dolls, terracotta toys and votive tablets from the Sukhothai era (1238–1438) became sources of inspiration for him, in addition to Western semi-abstract sculptures.