Man About Town: 6 May 2011

Man About Town: 6 May 2011

NEW ARTS LAUNCH
LAST night, Thursday May 5, HÔtel de la Paix’s Arts lounge launched a new dual exhibition by Chan Davy and Dy Proeung.

Chan Davy graduated from Phnom Penh’s Reyum Art School before continuing in Reyum’s experimental workshop program, which concluded with the 2007 exhibition In Transition. His work has been selected for numerous international exhibitions.

Dy Proeung graduated from the Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh in 1960 before working for Angkor Conservation and École Française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO). Earlier in his life he spent six years painstakingly reproducing miniature sculptures of several temples, one of which was given to King Sihanouk as a birthday present in 1995.

His miniature model of the Banteay Srey temple was the striking centrepiece of the exhibition last night.

According to the press release, the exhibition, titled The Scale of Angkor, gives “unique perspectives on both the vastness and grandeur of the architectural vision, and the intricacy and artistry to be found in even the smallest details therein”.
The exhibition runs until July 5.

NEW GM FOR AMANSARA
SIDDARTH Mehra, the personable general manager of the Amansara, Siem Reap’s most expensive hotel and “home” to some of the world’s most exclusive travellers, is leaving.

Before signing on at Amansara, he was resident manager at the Amanbagh luxury hotel in Jaipur, India. Before that he worked in management at The Imperial New Delhi, and at The Oberoi Group.

Amansara staffers are not permitted to make statements to the media, but the hotel did confirm Siddarth’s departure by saying starting dates for his successor “are not yet announced”.

But it is believed the new GM, New Zealander Sally Baughan, who was introduced to some members of the travel industry at an exclusive cocktail party at the hotel on Saturday night, will sign on in about a month after returning briefly to New Zealand.

In the mid 2000s she was the GM of Amanresort’s Jaipur hotel, Amanbagh, from where Siddarth Mehra came before his Siem Reap stint.

Meanwhile Siddarth will depart Siem Reap shortly, heading for his new post at a sister Amanresort’s hotel, the Amandari, in Ubud, Bali.

MISTAKEN IDENTITY SOLVED
OUR story in the April 22 issue of 7Days about Siem Reap-born Helene Bizot, daughter of Françoise Bizot, author of the seminal work The Gate, has resulted in quick action on behalf of Wikipedia’s correction department.

The story explained that Helene was often confused with a French actress of the same name. Furthermore, the story explained that while Helene is the mother of a son to actor Gerard Depardieu, many online sources, including Wikipedia, incorrectly identify the French actress as the mother of Depardieu’s “love child”, to indulge in tabloid parlance.

Within days of this story appearing in 7Days, Wikipedia amended its entry, citing The Phnom Penh Post.

AKI RA’S US TRIP
SiIEM Reap’s de-miner Aki Ra, one of the top 10 CNN heroes of 2010, is back in town after a fundraising jaunt in the US.

In late March he attended an auction and fundraiser at the trendy Peabody’s Café in Palm Springs, California, and one of the promotional draw cards of the night was “Dinner with Aki Ra and the chance to blow up a landmine”.

Thankfully, no landmines were exploded at the café. What this really meant was the monies raised would help blow up landmines back here in Cambodia.

Guests were also informed that they could get some “really cool stuff”, including jewellery made from unexploded bombs, signs from a minefield, and “Cleanup soap – wash away the dirt while you wash away landmines”.

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