Chumpon Apisuk (b. 1948, Nan) was born in a northern province of Thailand. He studied Art At Changsilpa School, Silapakorn University, Bangkok, and at the Museum School of Fine Arts, Boston, USA (1973–1976). He also studied with Tang Chang (1934–1990), a famous Thai contemporary poet and modernist painter during 1968–1970.
Apisuk is one of the original pioneers of performance art in Thailand and South East Asia. In Thailand in the early 1970s, he worked as a freelance journalist, writer and painter, after which he lived in USA and Hong Kong before returning to Thailand in 1985. Since 1986, he has performed in more than 200 different occasions in Germany, England, Canada, Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Vietnam, Korea, Hong Kong, Poland, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Australia, USA and in his native Thailand.
In 1993, Apisuk found Concrete House, an interactive art and community space, where artists and community development workers could join together organising events, exhibitions and workshops on various subjects and media. It was the first permanent performance art venue in Thailand. He is also the founder and artistic director of International Performance Art Festival Asiatopia, which has occurred annually in Thailand since 1998. The festival’s significance as a forum for performance art of South East, East and South Asia and also as a meeting point of Western and Asian artists has been vital.
In Thailand, artists have to take a stand on the social, political, ecological, migration and minority issues of their own country and the whole South East Asia. Apisuk is known for his activism for AIDS, human rights, democracy. He has been a social worker and active in EMPOWER Foundation with his wife Chantawipa Noi Apisuk. Apisuk’s upcoming performance at the event Là-bas→ Self as the Third, called Drum in the Dust, also deals with social questions of Thailand. Apisuk’s action, which features video projection, is a political plea and a cry for help for the evicted and the oppressed.