Haiijaii @Wonderfruit 2019

Haiijaii (meaning “breathe” in Thai) is a light installation fueled by data of air quality index collected from various locations around the world. The lights “breathe” according to the pureness of the air. Some will flicker, emulating us choking from pollution and some will pulse slowly, like steady inhalation and exhalation from a healthy atmosphere.

Art x Sustainability

The art installation is made out of recycled used and unwanted materials, Haiijaii aims to give a second life to the preloved, and promotes sustainability in all the materials we use.

Sustainable materials

In this modern single-usage era, we would like to restate the practice of giving a “second life” to our preloved items. Ranging from bamboo woods, commercial neon signs, beach mats. These materials serve as visual stimulations for inspiring cohabitation in the world; the city, the forest and the beach, nourishing them, nourishing us.

Neon – The intangible cultural visual language

  • We are reconstructing used and unwanted commercial neons, and giving them a new life in terms of visual shape and purpose.
  • In Haiijaii, our art installation, each set of neon piece would represent a country or region.

Traditional commercial use of neon light peaked its height in the 1950s, where it became the inspiration for a lot of futuristic sci-fi movies.

With its downturn due to the rise of commercial LED neons and lightboxes as well as government regulations, neon became a declining and shrinking scene globally. However in recent years, there has been an artistic revival reformation to bring back the neon, as seen around the world in art works, commercial spaces and signage.

Haiijaii first came about as 4 creatives, Adulaya Kim Hoontrakul (Curator), Ka Lun Karen Chan (Neon artist and designer), Frederic Bussiere (Architect and Multimedia designer) and Santipab Somboon (Multimedia designer), got together to discuss the notion of air quality and carbon emission.

What is bad air? Is data enough to make people aware and react? Also, is the air quality index weaponised? 

Factual as it may be, many richer countries off-set their carbon emission through buying power, leaving poorer countries with a consistent data that categorises them permanently as ‘polluted’ and hardly have good air. 

With Haiijaii, we chose to communicate suffocation through the flickering lights of recycled glass neons. Some will have sharp flashes, some will pulsate slower, emulating breathing patterns affected by pollution. 

The audience are invited to breathe along with the rhythm of the light to feel the urgency through surrogate. 

When the body is used to receive information, we believe the impact is greater. Through the natural act of breathing, the common act of survival, we hope to not only unite but to find that missing link that has created such a polarised world we live in today.



As mentioned in Tatler Asia, the Wonderfruit Festival has become one of Asia’s Biggest Festivals. Known as the Asian “Burning Man”, it is a celebration of art, music, food and ideas to catalyze positive impact on sustainability and lifestyle. In its sixth edition, Wonderfruit is held on Dec 12 to Dec 16 in Pattaya, Thailand.


About Kim the curator
Adulaya Kim Hoontrakul is a Bangkok based art curator whose focus is on curatorial activism. She holds a graduate degree in History of Art and Archaeology with Music from SOAS and a postgraduate from Goldsmiths London in Asian Art Histories.
Kim has worked with multiple artist activists from around Asia Pacific, exhibiting social and politically engaging art.

About Karen the neon artist-designer
Hong Kong-based artist-designer, Ka Lun Karen Chan aka chankalun has a background of set design, visual merchandising and a master degree of Design and Technology at Parsons School of Design. Ranged from works that involve ribbon, 3D doodling, and interactive LED neon light, she is expanding into large-scale neon light art installations. Her works have been seen on #Hashtag Legend, SCMP, Goldthread, TVB Sunday Report, etc.

About Fred the architect and multimedia designer
French-Portuguese visual artist, Frederic Bussiere is graduated from a Master in Arts in France then started an international career: Buenos Aires, Paris, Sydney and finally Hong Kong. Through his travel, his approach of art has moved from 2D animation, to fashion video, and then finally to visual arts, incorporating video projection, installation and new technologies.

About Santi the multimedia designer
Santipab Somboon, a creative technologist, based in New York, holds a degree from the Parsons School of Design and the Bartlett School of Architecture. His projects draw on the use of open-source data as a medium to interact with and transform our perceptions of visual and architectural spaces. His practice incorporates a range of artistic strategies: sound installation, photogrammetry, data visualization, and virtual reality.

Project Details

  • Launch date Dec 12 - 16, 2019
  • Client Wonderfruit Festival
  • Collaborative Creatives Adulaya Kim Hoontrakul, Frederic Bussiere, Santipab Somboon, Ka Lun Karen Chan