Artist Sasinun Kladpetch honors family with Art for AIDS charity piece

Sasinun Kladpetch grew up in Bangkok, Thailand as an only child. In these early years often spent alone or among adults, she had the opportunity to discover her true passion, her favorite pastime even when solo. For Kladpetch, that meant art, drawing, and creating. Now, as a famed artist in her home country and abroad, she is spending every day living out her childhood dream.

Currently living in San Francisco, Kladpetch has had ample opportunity throughout her esteemed career to show the world just what she is capable of as a visual artist. She is currently working on a project with the celebrated DZINE Gallery in San Francisco, where she often features pieces and gives artists talks, and is waiting for the ongoing pandemic to come to an end so she can return to her permanent sculpture at the iconic Chateau D’Orquevaux Artist Residency in France.

Sasinun Kladpetch

“I love the freedom of experimenting and creating something. It challenges me to make art and a lot of time not knowing what it’s going to look like until the piece is done. I think it’s my motivation to go all the way until you’re famous and accepted in the art world. Nature and the environment are what I care about most and have become my inspiration. My art speaks to that and helps to educate  people without forcing anything on them. Art is the best way to express one’s point of view. They will learn naturally and believe what they see instead of being lectured by someone,” she says.

Despite the COVID 19 pandemic putting her French travel plans on hold, Kladpetch has been trying to stay as busy as possible while staying in the Bay Area. Most recently, she donated a sculpture to the Art for AIDS Auction in October 2020. The auction normally takes place at an event venue in San Francisco, but in 2020, they hosted everything virtually. The online bidding ran from October 10th to 17th, with the Artist Talks on Oct. 14, 2020, featuring Jury Members Tom O’Connor and Renee DeCossio.

“During the pandemic lockdown, it made me realize how important my family is to me. We missed the chance to see each other and not knowing when we will meet again was very tough. Once I heard that UCSF Alliance Health Project was looking for a donation from artists to help raise money in support of the mental health and wellness of the LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities, I was eager to create this piece and donate to their cause to give back to the community and support other families,” says Kladpetch.

With this auction, Kladpetch donated a sculpture. This piece is a triangle shape to represent the strongest shape of all. Each pillar is relying on each other. For Kladpetch, it reflected the foundation of her family. She has a strong relationship with her parents as an only child, the perfect triangle, with each person supporting and holding up the others. 

“I wanted people to realize that no matter what, family will always be there for you. UCSF is like a family for so many, a home for people who need help,” she says.

Art for AIDS began in 1996 as a small community event held by artists who felt powerless while watching their friends die of AIDS. The event was held at SOMArts Cultural Center and raised a few thousand dollars that was donated to the California AIDS Ride. Now, 20 years later, the auction has raised over 2.5 million, and has become an invaluable resource for the LGBTQ and HIV-affected clients at the UCSF Alliance Health Project (AHP).

“UCSF has done such a phenomenal project for the community, supporting the LGBTQ and HIV-affected communities in constructing healthy and meaningful lives. This has always been so important, but now with the pandemic, this mental and emotional support is more crucial than ever before,” she says.

Kladpetch loves charity events and giving back through her craft. That is why she does what she does: to make a difference. Working with UCSF allowed her to do that. On top of this, speaking to the artist community through her Artist Talk was therapeutic during a tough time amid lockdown for the artist. She is very grateful for the opportunity to donate to Art for AIDS. 

“I was incredibly thrilled to be a part of this great cause. Knowing that my work helped benefit people in need encouraged me to create more work and continue to be a part of this community. I hope to find more opportunities to contribute my artistic skills and perspective in the future,” she says.

For more information on the UCSF Alliance Health Project, check out their website.