UNSUNG AWARD HEROES
Staffers from the McDermott Gallery were the unsung heroes in the strong showing by Siem Reap artists at the inaugural You Khin Memorial Women’s Art Prize awarded in Phnom Penh last month.
In January it was agreed that McDermott Gallery would act as an information point for the artists based in Siem Reap.
The gallery’s Bina Hanley takes up the story: “We put the word out in Siem Reap about the competition and we were overwhelmed with the response we received. We thought we would have one, maybe two submissions, but after a meeting held at Art Deli (thanks to proprietor Jam) we received five contemporary paintings from four student artists and one professional artist. The professional artist is Tes Vanna, a wonderful young contemporary artist currently working at Artisans d’Angkor.”
Hanley also contacted Anjali House to see if they had any aspiring photographers willing to participate, and was delighted when they came up with a submission.
“We sent all six submissions to Phnom Penh in May and waited eagerly to hear news of the award ceremony,” Hanley said.
And of course the news was good. Vanna received an honourable mention and Sophal, a student artist, won the award in her category.
TREE PLANTING BINGE
Not that long ago, the Siem Reap provincial authorities seemed to think that trees were uglier than billboards, and a lot of lopping was implemented.
But local authorities seem to have turned over a new leaf, and in the past fortnight have indulged in a massive tree planting binge.
Hundreds of trees have been implanted into dozens of sidewalks in dozens of side streets in the downtown district.
The trees have been densely planted in neat, disciplined rows about 10 metres apart, and then encased in quite fancy (and presumably quite expensive) wooden surrounds.
Piles of bricks have now been positioned next to each tree-and-wood surround, with huge piles of sandy soil also dumped in the streets.
Residents are curious about what will be done with the bricks and sand; obviously it’s a work in progress.
The email address listed in last week’s column for Norm Clark, the organiser of this year’s Great Cambodian Bike Ride was wrong. The correct email address is [email protected]