Stand alone movie theatres are a fading phenomenon and probably one of the most overlooked things from the past century. These structures that speak of the movie habits of a bygone society remind us of a host who still carries an air from the past century. Have we been hospitable enough to the movie theatres that undoubtedly form a part of our cultural history?
Artist Philip Jablon pays tribute to the lonely old structures facing the brunt of modernization through his installations exhibited at H Project Space. The exhibition aptly named ‘Future Ruins’ will be on display till the 29th of May. A possible scenario we could reach in a near future is a result of negligence stand alone theatres face in many rising countries such as Myanmar.
From the beginning of his project which dates back to 2010, Jablon had been to over 300 stand alone movie theatres that lay scattered over South East Asia. His photographs from his visits to these old movie houses are on display at the H Project Space. At the Bangkok Edge Festival held in February, Jablon chose to display mainly his photographs of the structures in Myanmar with only the Scala making an entry from Thailand. By this, Jablon aims to make a statement of the disappearing phenomenon of old movie houses in Thailand and the cultural significance of the Scala to the Thai people- a society at the dawn of rapid modernization.
His portrayal of these falling, disappearing structures comes to significance when societies looking towards consumer progress sometimes forget to preserve what is their history from abandonment and negligence or even from bulldozing.