THOAMADA (17 MAY – 12 JUNE, 2011), VUTH LYNO, INSTALLATION VIEW. IMAGE COURTESY THE ARTIST AND SA SA BASSAC. – TAASA Review December 2011

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This article was originally found in the December 2011 edition of TAASA Review (Volume 20, Issue 4, Page 37).

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In May 2011, an exhibition at Java Cafe & Gallery celebrated the work of Meas Sokhorn, an artist focusing on art produced from discarded possessions simply titled Pore'.Pore’, as Natalie Pace, independent curator has noted: "refers to the production of sweat during physical labour; the works acknowledge the declining ability of craftsmanship to provide a sustainable livelihood due to a reduction in demand and motivation …Pore' is a lament to the creativity and physicality of diminished craftsmanship." In an earlier exhibition, an installation by Khorn at Java entitledContemporary Art Museum’ (2010) was created "to highlight the fact that Cambodia has no contemporary art museum despite the fact there are a number of artists creating work now".

He continued: "We lack such a place, we’re showing in shops and galleries, we need it because we are limited to small pieces." Private galleries are mushrooming in the capital and elsewhere: an obviously healthy sign for the growth of contemporary arts in all fields.

During June 2011 the crop included new spaces at Romeet' (Phare Ponleu Selpak: arts & performance based in Battambang) andTeo+Namfah Gallery’, as well as the new Sa Sa Bassac art space, which opened in Phnom Penh on the first floor of a 50s apartment building at a prime location near the National Museum of Cambodia and within sight of the Royal Palace. Siem Reap, the city adjacent to the Angkor temple complex, has an important growing arts community with contemporary young Cambodian artists’ works exhibited in the Arts Lounge at Hotel de la Paix and the newer Thev Gallery under the curatorship of Sasha Constable...