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WHEN ITALY MEET THE ORIENT. ITALIANS ARTISTS AND THE KINGDOM OF SIAM

P. Gerbaldo
Thursday 8 November 2018 by Libadmin2018

ABSTRACT

It is here, in Oriental Hotel Bangkok (now Mandarin Oriental) in Thailand, that one gathers, around the Regio Parco Dusit Park, the stupendous fruit of the meeting between Italy and the Orient. An important story but not very famous story. An eclectic artistic-architectural treasure, in some ways fabulous, which developed in a few decades in the independent Kingdom of Siam. In fact, at the end of XIX century the rivalry between Britain and France in South West Asia ensures the survival of the Kingdom of Siam.
The meeting between Bangkok and Italy occurred, in fact, between the end of the eighteen hundreds and the first few years of the nineteen hundreds, thanks to the King of Siam, Chulalongkorn (Rama V) who, attracted by the West, entrusted the Department of Public Works to Italian engineer Carlo Allegri.
In this favorable context, on 19 May 1887, also opens the new Oriental Hotel.
Thus there were many whose destination was Bangkok, some for just a few months and others who remained there permanently, like the Florentine sculptor Corrado Feroci (Silpa Bhirasi). Architects. Artists. Entrepreneurs. All undertook the long road towards the Court of Siam, today Thailand since 1939, to make their contribution to the modernization undertaken by the King.

Keywords: Siam, Bangkok, Italy, Turin.


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