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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Stone sculptures head for Sweden

Stone sculptures head for Sweden

Rolf Akeby from Sweden, right, celebrates in Siem Reap after shipping 2000 kg of

local sandstone craft sculptures, to be sold through his small shop in Stockholm.

This is Akeby's retirement interest after a career working with international development

assistance programs in Asia, the South Pacific and Eastern Europe.

"These days it is mainly a hobby of mine to travel around and purchase items

which preferably can be seen in a historical and ethnological context, like new sandstone

sculptures in pre-Angkor and Angkor styles," he said.

" This is beautiful art work and I am happy to be able to help some people in

Siem Reap to get an income. By encouraging young people to learn how to make sandstone

sculptures, I feel I am supporting a very old profession, which otherwise might die

out.

"I have a small shop in Stockholm, but as I am mostly travelling, the business

is limited as the shop is often closed. I have no idea if these sculptures will be

in demand in Sweden, but I always buy what I like myself then I hope others may have

the same taste."

Akeby said the opportunity for him to buy for export was due to the Cambodian government

encouraging the development of traditional craft. Government approval was still required

to ship goods out. - Richard Woodd

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