Subscribe Search

Search form

Hotel de la Paix is in bloom once more

Hotel de la Paix is in bloom once more

Tieng Phalla oil painting on display at Hotel de la Paix’s Arts Lounge.

After a long run of artwork exhibits in black and white, Hotel de la Paix’s Arts Lounge is now a riot of colour to usher in the festive season.

The featured exhibit is titled Bloom, and is the work of Tieng Phalla, a native of Kampong Speu Province and a graduate of the Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh. The paintings in “Bloom” have a hyper realistic and super colourful style – you can almost feel the pollen and pheromones in the air and hear the buzzing of insects.

There’s certainly an undercurrent to Phalla’s oeuvre, as he focuses on swarms of flies and the naughtier aspects of the orchid’s anatomy. One flower’s centre unmistakably looks like a pair of plump lips, ready for smooching, and a pack of flies surrounds an electrical socket in the corner of the lounge, suggesting it has some sort of blossoming powers. The paintings are for sale, most for about $1300.

Phalla unfortunately wasn’t able to attend his own opening at the Arts Lounge on December 12, because he is working on a mural for a temple outside of Phnom Penh. But the opening reception for his exhibition carried all the hallmarks of a Hotel de la Paix innovative launch night, and felt more like something out of New York than Siem Reap.

Guests shuffled through the modern lounge poring over the Khmer artist’s oil paintings of orchids, which spilled off their canvases and onto the walls and columns of the room. The stylish bar lighting continually changed colour from yellow to purple to magenta, reflecting off patrons’ faces as they sipped Chilean wine. Black-clad waiters offered up fancy treats like lamb skewers with yogurt sauce, as Arts Lounge curator Don Protasio, wearing fire engine red from head to toe, flitted around like a butterfly.


  • Kak Channthy, Cambodian Space Project frontwoman, killed in crash at 38 [Updated]

    Updated 5:05pm, Tuesday, March 20, 2018 Kak Channthy, frontwoman of popular The Cambodian Space Project, was killed Tuesday morning in a traffic accident in Phnom Penh. She was 38. Channthy, the internationally recognised singer-songwriter also known as “Srey Thy”, was reportedly travelling in a tuk-tuk on the city's

  • Australians protest Asean summit visit by PM Hun Sen

    Hundreds of protesters gathered in Sydney’s Hyde Park on Friday to protest against Cambodian strongman Hun Sen, who claimed to have been gifted millions of dollars by the Australian government ahead of a special Asean summit this weekend. An estimated 300 protesters, the majority of

  • One Australian, one Cambodian killed in explosion at military base

    Updated: 5:20pm, Friday 16 March 2018 An Australian tourist and a Cambodian soldier were killed in an explosion on Thursday afternoon at an army base in Cambodia’s Kampong Speu province. The Australian, whom the government initially identified as a technical demining expert in his 40s, and

  • Peeling back layers of prehistory in Battambang

    When the man passed away, he had not yet reached 50. He belonged to a tribe that had settled near the Sangker River in Battambang province, likely cultivating the fields and raising animals. On the side, they hunted for boars, and even turtles, one of which