"Seven Tuks in Bangkok"
Title: "Seven Tuks in Bangkok"
by Jay Koka, © 2015
44”w x 34”, acrylic on canvas, Artist Collection

TUK-TUK: wikipedia: "An auto rickshaw, also known as a three-wheeler, samosa, tempo, tuk-tuk (in Thailand), trishaw, autorick, bajaj (in India), keke Napep or Maruwa (in Nigeria), rick, tricycle, mototaxi, baby taxi, lapa or tukxi (Piaggio Ape Calessino) in popular parlance, is a common form of public transportation in many countries ..."

"I've seen Tuk-Tuks in countless countries and, I have to confess, I would love to own one." says Jay Koka, "I am however concerned that it would be a real roll of the dice to walk away from a collision with anything but the tiniest cars where I live." (They are called Tuk-Tuks in Bangkok because of the sound of their engine.)

"Like everyone else, I thought that Tuks are all the same... as cool as they are, they are really nothing more than overgrown 3-wheel motorcycles. Bangkok is home to an astonishing number of them, more than anywhere else I've been and it's when you see them in a group, standing still, that you start to have an appreciation for how different they truly are from one another."

"In big tropical cities like Bangkok, they are the ubiquitous Taxi. But closer examination like that required while doing this painting has shown me that first they are very different from each other and second that they perform an immense number of jobs. For example, in the painting there are a number of Taxi's but there are also a couple of "freight" Tuks, sort of like small transport trucks that carry everything that can possibly be strapped, balance or wedged into their somewhat limited space. The 3rd and 7th from the left are "transport-Tuks"."

Another discovery was just how individually unique they are." continues Koka, "Take the first Tuk on the left. This is obviously a high-end machine. Note the pin-striping and the chrome trim not to mention the positively luxurious interior...and not just for the passengers... but the driver too. But that's only the beginning. Like motoring enthusiast the world over owners customize and personalize their Tuk in an effort to make it "their own"."

Concludes Koka, "I came across this group of Tuks in Bangkok at what could best be described as a "tuk- stop", a watering hole for the locals."