Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - A staple medium: Art made of rice grains




A staple medium: Art made of rice grains

Aishas Ni.
Aishas Ni. Thik Kaliyann

A staple medium: Art made of rice grains

Most Cambodians eat rice every day, but Aishas Ni has found another use for the grain: she makes pictures out of it. At her stall at the Angkor Night Market are images of Apsara dancers, Angkor Wat, animals and flowers all carefully made using different shades of rice.

The 29-year-old Cham woman said she learned the craft in 2010 from her husband, who comes from Saudi Arabia.

“After I got married, according to Islam, I have to stay home as a housewife,” she explained.

“However, it is good for me to stay home if I do something to earn money at the same time, so I decided to ask my husband to teach me about rice art painting, because I think I can make things different from other people.”

After six years making and selling the rice art, she opened her stall at the market earlier this year. “It is the best feeling ever when people come into my store and admire my work,” she said.

Sitting in her shop using a pair of tweezers to carefully place the grains in a pre-drawn outline of a landscape with an elephant in the foreground, Aishas said each picture took a minimum of about three hours.

“This work is not easy; you cannot do it without a strong commitment, concentration, and patience,” she said.

Once she spent a month making a world map out of rice, which sold just a couple of days after she put it on display.

Usually, she sells two to three rice pictures per day. The price varies, depending on size, with an A4 picture going for about $20.

“It’s not only tourists that are interested in my work, but also the local people, as they are so impressed with what I have done,” she said. “I hope they will continue to support my work.”

To contact Aishas Ni about her rice art painting, call 093 40 90 03.

MOST VIEWED

  • Body of woman killed in Bangkok returns

    The Cambodian embassy in Thailand is working to repatriate the body of a casino dealer who was shot dead in Bangkok on Monday night. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Kuy Kuong told The Post on Wednesday that officials are preparing paperwork to

  • Chikungunya hits 15 provinces, says gov’t

    Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said on Thursday that the chikungunya outbreak in the Kingdom has spread to 15 provinces. Some 1,700 people are now suspected to have the disease. Vandine urged people to prevent its further spread by eliminating shelters for the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes

  • Gov’t exempts visa A and B holders from Covid fees

    Airline passengers who are diplomats and officials of international organisations holding Type A and B visas for travel to Cambodia are exempted from paying Covid-19 testing fees, said the Ministry of Health in its latest adjustment of rules on Wednesday. Health Minister Mam Bun Heng

  • Bill covering dress code draws ire

    Ministry of Interior secretary of state Ouk Kim Lek responded on Tuesday to criticism concerning a draft law that would ban women from wearing overly revealing clothing, saying that input from all parties will be considered as the law moves through the promulgation process. Several

  • Passing the test: Is Cambodia’s education system failing its people?

    The Kingdom’s education system needs to grow its people but some flaws might stifle​ this growth Coming from the Khmer Rouge occupation, with the loss of many scholars and academicians and a collapsed government, the education system had to be reconstructed from scratch – one

  • What’s the deal with Cambodia and China’s FTA?

    Cambodia’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with China kicks off a series of FTAs in future but for now, critics wonder what else the parties could bring to the table apart from what it already has to date By the end of this year, Cambodia