Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Fine art auction raises more than $20,000 for local NGOs



Fine art auction raises more than $20,000 for local NGOs

Christie’s auctioneer Lionel Gosset strikes the gavel at Raffles Hotel Le Royal
Christie’s auctioneer Lionel Gosset strikes the gavel at Raffles Hotel Le Royal yesterday. Pha Lina

Fine art auction raises more than $20,000 for local NGOs

More than $20,000 was raised for local arts charities yesterday when Christie’s auctioneer Lionel Gosset sold works from around the globe at Raffles Hotel Le Royal.

Around 100 people turned out for the ReCreation 2014 Christie’s Charity Auction to bid on 47 paintings, sculptures, garments, pieces of jewellery and other handicrafts.

Frenchman Thomas Pierre’s acrylic painting Galerie des Glaces raised the highest bid at $2,300 while other items that found buyers included a Japanese-style tanto knife from Citadel Knives, a water buffalo sculpture made of hay by artist Nou Sary and a black dress by designer Sok Chandara.

All proceeds went to art advocacy NGOs Cambodia 2000 and Amrita Performing Arts.

“We raised $26,000,” said Gosset, who previously conducted ReCreation’s first charity auction, which was for Cambodia Living Arts, in 2012.

Despite the distance from France, where Gosset has auctioned artwork by masters including Victor Hugo, Henri-Georges Clouzot and Rochas, he said that Cambodia’s art auctions are much the same as those at home.

The event was less successful than the first charity auction, said Madeleine de Langalerie, founder and CEO of ReCreation.

“I’m a little bit disappointed right now, because I thought it would have been better,” De Langalerie said, adding that she suspected yesterday’s political rally by the opposition dampened the mood.

“The first one two years ago was great fun, because it was the first time and there was a lot of excitement. This time was much more difficult because I think of the [political] situation here: the traffic outside, demonstrations, people were late.”

De Langalerie added that the event was complicated further when it was moved from Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra despite the fact that Galerie des Arts, a three-month exhibition being held in conjunction with the auction where the artists may sell their work, is at Sofitel.

“The changes were difficult to explain and a lot of people went to Sofitel instead of coming here,” she said.

However, representatives from both Amrita and Cambodia 2000 said they were grateful for the money raised.

“In Cambodia, the culture of philanthropy is not very strong like [it is] in the US or Europe, so from this kind of event the money will go to support our projects that we’re doing,” said Rithisal Kang, executive director of Amrita, which promotes contemporary dance and theatre in the Kingdom.

Princess Norodom Veasna Diva Sirivudh, spokesperson for Cambodia 2000 and sister-in-law of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk, said that the auction did more than just raise funds for her NGO.

“This is a good thing happening for us, and we are very pleased and honoured for Christie’s to choose our association to be part of the beneficiaries,” she said.

Cambodia 2000, which was founded by the late HRH Norodom Vacheahra in 1996, launched two new programs late last year, the first donating free art supplies to rural schools and the second supporting emerging artists in search of financial aid.

While most of the art came from Cambodians or expatriates in the Kingdom, some of the work was unrelated to Cambodia.

Gwen McKenzie, a tourist from New York whose sculpture sold for $100, said that she decided to donate an art piece after being told about the auction by a friend based in Phnom Penh.

“I do a lot of pottery, but I’m not a full-time potter, so I really don’t have time to promote things, so it’s really nice when someone likes your work and pays for it, particularly for a charity,” she said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Siem Reap drain canal now ‘mangrove’ promenade

    A more than half a kilometre long stretch of canal in Siem Reap has been covered and turned into a promenade to attract visitors, said Ly Rasmey, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on September 16. The new pedestrianised

  • Typhoon Noru brings flash floods – 16 dead

    An official warned that that the 16th typhoon of the season, Noru, had brought heavy rains to areas the Mekong River and flooded thousands of homes in the provinces bordering Thailand. As of September 27, the death toll from the flooding had risen to 16. National Committee

  • Angkor wildlife, aquarium park still to open October

    The Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium complex about 30km southeast of Siem Reap town with initial total investment of more than $70 million is reportedly still on track for an end-October opening. The park is located on a 100ha plot along National Road 6 in Kbon village, Khchas

  • Defence minister reaffirms Kingdom’s staunch support for One-China policy

    Minister of National Defence General Tea Banh has reaffirmed Cambodia’s unwavering support for the One-China policy. Tea Banh was speaking at the September 20 ceremonial handover of 117 vehicles and other military equipment donated by China’s defence ministry, held at Phnom Chumreay International Military Training

  • Deaths due to ‘lifestyle’ diseases rise in Kingdom

    The Ministry of Health has called on people to pay closer attention to their health to protect themselves from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which it said have caused high rates of deaths in the country. Ministry secretary of state York Sambath made the call at a

  • Textile industry minimum wage now $200

    The official minimum wage for workers in textile-related sectors including garment, footwear, and travel goods for 2023 was pegged at $198, with Prime Minister Hun Sen stepping in to add $2 to the total, making it $200 per month. The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training made the announcement