Interior Design in Thailand after World War II

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Pimonmart Wankanapon


Interior Design in Thailand has been evolving, owing to domestic development and international interactions. The development of Thai interior design can be divided into six periods; (1) the early postwar (1945-1964), (2) the  early  development  (1965-1975),  (3)  the  Thai  pioneer  (1976-1986),  (4)  the  globalization/Westernization  (1987-1996), (5) the economic crisis (1997-2003), and (6) the Millennium (2004-present). In accordance to its socio-economic conditions, interior design in Thailand has been influenced by international interactions as well as domestic policies, as demonstrated by plenty interior designs and a fair number of professionals practicing interior design, as well as architectural styles and building types. Three components represented the interior design  in  each  period  are  presented  as  space,  function,  finishing  and  furnishing.  Interior  space  has  been  developed from separated hierarchical functions which required more area to open-and-flow style with combined function. Functions were ranging from simple (one function per space) to complex space (multiple, overlapping functions per space) and from public space for the purpose of sales to private residences for the aesthetics and comfortable lifestyles. Various finishing and furnishing were used ranging from imported luxurious brand-name design to local home-grown design, all of which are influenced by Western lifestyles, globalization, and other factors, including media and public visibility as well as social media. Interior design came to be more domesticated original and diverse owing to the digital platform and modern technologies. Hence, it is important to see how interior design in Thailand has corresponded with socio-economic conditions and international relations through professional development of interior designers.


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