Akkara Naktamna Bangkok, Thailand

Monkey Cages

These open air cages of monkeys I found at a zoo in Thailand. I was shocked by their atmospheres especially eerie background paintings. While I had been capturing I thought that we, human, actually are living in the places similar to these monkeys. No real cages but no freedom, surrounded by fake natures, and always watched by someone else. Anyway we would adapt for living in these cages. Ridiculously, in the end we would love them as real homes.


Akkara Naktamna was born in Bangkok in 1979. Started shooting as a self-taught photographer in 2008 influenced by an Elliott Erwitt’s book and a comedy movie called Pecker. His works have been shown widely both in Thailand and abroad such as IPA Street Photography Asia Award 2013, Miami Street Photography Festival 2013, Xishuangbana Photo Festival 2014, Photo Bangkok Festival 2015, Singapore Photo Festival 2016, NYC Art Book Fair 2016. SIGNS his zine is also collected by Franklin Furnace Archive and MoMA Library. He co-founded Street Photo Thailand collective, founded Good Art Book, and c-Type Magazine. Currently Akkara works as a software engineer, has one adorable daughter, and spends his a little bit free time for photography.


Akkara Naktamna

Akkara Naktamna was chosen by photographer Noppadol Maitreechit


Laatikkomo’s interview with Akkara Naktamna June 7th, 2018

L: Where are you from? What cities, and/or countries have you lived in – or what places have influenced you?
AN: I live in Bangkok, Thailand. This place always influences me about creating photography work.

L: What is your earliest memory of photography?
AN: Pecker, it’s a comedy film about a young man taking pictures in his neighborhood. I started taking pictures after watching.

L:. The content of your work seems to be based in the actions or interactions between people. What inspires you most about people?
AN: I like the relationship between people and environment (or people). Sometimes they can live together peacefully, sometimes not and it is interesting for me to create work from those.

L: Different elements of art often appear in your photographs such as work from art exhibitions, monuments and/or sculptures. Do you live in an environment where these types of objects are very common, or are you specifically drawn to making photographs with other artworks?
AN: Actually I love to go to museums or galleries in Bangkok which luckily I mostly get good shots from those places.

L: You pay specially attention to colour, but some of your series are also taken in black and white. What interests you about colour or what is your relationship to black and white versus colour film? 
AN: Color is more real to me. But for creating B&W in some project, I wanted to particularly push some emotion to the audience.

L: Photography, and documentary photography in particular, is often a tool for telling stories. Do you have an overall (perhaps indirect) story or message you want to tell with your images? 
AN: Yes. Like the “Monkey Cages” project which I want to use these photographs to tell something about what we’re living in today; not just house but bigger than that.

L: Could you list five or more words related to the work you are showing in Laatikkomo?
AN: Human – Monkey – Cage – Residence – Social

Thank you so much Akkara!!