Jim Thompson The House on the Klongby Jim Thompson
The polished wood panels of a group of Thai style teak houses, facing the slow-moving waters of the Klong Maha Nag, shine brilliantly in the high-noon sun. Here was the home of Jim Thompson, the legendary American businessman who developed a thriving silk business in the years before he went missing in the jungles of the Cameron Highlands in Malaysia a man whose flair for the tasteful and graceful led him to build a house in which objects of great value and beauty can still be seen displayed in appropriate surroundings. The collection includes a large number of pieces ranging from stone sculptures from the Khmer and Sukhothai periods to Chinese blue-and-white ceramics and the five-colored bencharong; to paintings in various media, some dating from the Ayutthaya period, some painted in the last decades. Other valuable objects include a selection of bronze pieces, some of which date back to the pre-Angkor period, gold votive plaques, and wooden sculptures. This book reviews the early years when Thompson was building his business and looking for a location for his new house; the reader is then introduced to the house and garden; and finally the art objects in the Jim Thompson collection are described in more detail. Author: William Warren (Editions Didier Millet Pte, Feb. 2015, HC, 112 pp)
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The late American entrepreneur Jim Thompson is credited with revitalizing and bringing world fame to the Thai silk industry. Thompson, who settled in Bangkok in 1945, recognized the commercial possibilities of Thai silk at a time when the ancient handicraft was disappearing due to competition from cheaper, machine-made fabrics. Convinced that the beauty and quality of Thai silk would have appeal outside Thailand, Thompson founded The Thai Silk Company, Ltd. For over fifty years, the Bangkok-based company has been the premiere manufacturer of exquisite Thai silk products.