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Thai Arts Masters: Traditional Thai Basket Weaving

Thai PBS and Thailand Foundation proudly present “Thai Arts Masters”, where we explore the stories of master craftsmen from all across Thailand.

In this episode, we explore the refined art of “Yan Lipao” basket weaving. An icon of Southern Thailand, the Yan Lipao baskets are woven out of thin, strong vines known as Yan Lipao. The vines are harvested from the forest and must be finely processed before being worked on by dedicated hands. The techniques, passed down for generations, allow for a mundane plant to be transformed into exquisite artworks, some of which can be worth thousands of dollars. This is truly a testament of how the respect and appreciation for nature has allowed for Thai craftsmen to develop refined skills from natural materials.

We visited Master Montha Kangwankong in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province to see all the meticulous steps required to produce this treasured craft. We also talk with her husband, Master Chakkrit Jittrat, who forge elegant nielloware pieces that decorate the baskets.