The Ban Bat community in Bangkok is one of the oldest and best known crafting communities in Bangkok's Chinatown. For more than a century, residents have been hand crafting monk’s bowls ("bat") following the methods inherited from the Buddhist tradition. As cheaper, industrially produced bowls are overtaking the everyday market, Ban Bat’s residents are struggling to sustain their customer base, catering to local and foreign tourism in order to preserve their traditions and identity.
This project creates a new entrance gate to the community's main alleyway, which provides shade, greenery and simple urban furniture, a space of rest for locals and visitors alike. An accompanying mural introduces visitors to the history of the community and the process of bat-making while facilitating their navigation with the aid of clear maps and legends. The main structure is inspired by the metal-working techniques of the local artisans, learned during the design process which engaged with the community through a series of participatory workshops.
Ban Bat Gateway