WTF? Bangkok's latest 'it' bar and gallery is more than just a clever name

WTF? Bangkok's latest 'it' bar and gallery is more than just a clever name

Making arts accessible to the masses, WTF has created a buzz with its comfortably tiny layout and one-of-a-kind dishes
WTF BangkokWTF hopes to make art accessible by staying light-hearted and fun.

WTF, Bangkok's latest bar/gallery hotspot, is all about acronyms. Tucked in the quiet sub soi of Sukhumvit 51, WTF is definitely ABC -- arts, booze and cuisine. 

The bar/gallery incorporates all of these into its mission statement -- to be a creative social club -- and the four owners thrive on intimacy shared with good friends, accessible arts and one-of-a-kind dishes. Officially WTF stands for “Wonderful Thai Friendships," but we all know what it really means so they're not fooling anybody. 

WTF recently opened its doors to cater to those who want to avoid Bangkok's massive nightclubs and crowded hangouts, though it's accessible to all as it's only a short distance from the Ekamai/Thonglor madness. It's comfortably tiny with a few tables scattered around on the first floor near a well stocked bar while the second floor serves as a gallery space. 

The bar and gallery hybrid has been tried and tested to various degrees of success in Bangkok over the years, but according to the owners of WTF, there is still room for many more.

“We actually think there aren't that many in Bangkok. The idea is to make arts as accessible as possible both in terms of content by staying away from something too serious and focusing on something fun and light-hearted," says Kamonwan Saenissara, one of WTF's partners. "We don’t have strict criteria in choosing artists and mediums. We hope to attract people beyond the typical artsy crowd.”

“We also hope that what differentiates us is our menu. We have some unique cocktails and tapas dishes you won't find anywhere else in Bangkok,” she adds. 

WTF opened last month and its inaugural exhibition runs until the end of this month, featuring 13 artists with and without public recognition. It was curated by Chattiya Nitpolprasert, who co-curated "Gondola al Paradiso Co, Ltd" at the Thai Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2009.

WTF has also expanded its horizon with mini, almost secretive live shows, starting with local icon Gene Kasidit last week. Many other acts are in the pipeline. Check their events calendar for the latest. 

Getting there

WTF Bangkok
7 Soi Thonglor 51, BTS: Thonglor
Restaurant/bar open Tuesday-Sunday 6pm-1am
Gallery open 3pm-10pm
Tel: +66 (0)2 626 6246

O. Pravatti works for a major newspaper, freelances for magazines, sits around waiting for shooting stars, and runs a clubnight.
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