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Art of Survival

 

There are some incredibly striking works on display as part of Meta House's "Art of Survival" exhibition. I can hardly believe that I've been to the gallery several times for screenings recently and haven't stopped to look at the works on display. An article in the current issue of Newsweek examines the ongoing group exhibition, which swelled to include a total of 40 artists this month. Each had a chance to reflect on the Khmer Rouge and, as the article describes, their creations vary significantly depending on age. Older artists generally crafted more literal depictions of the period, while the works of younger contributors reveal a society that has barely begun to confront its dark history. Oeur Sokuntevy, 25, admits in the article that her generation rarely discusses the Khmer Rouge period: "It's sad, but it's in the past." Her piece, "I am too young to understand these words," shows a girl talking on her cell phone next to a phrase reproduced from Pol Pot's "Little Red Book."

In all, it appears "Art of Survival" accurately captures the staggering generational gulf between those who lived through the Khmer Rouge, and those who were born after 1979.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Pictured: "I am too young to understand these words" (above); "Love was the enemy of Anka's revolution," by Hen Sophal (at right).

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