When we think of art in Cambodia, it is images steeped in a long and rich history that come to mind, echoing the Khmer Empire, or the fascinating Temples of Angkor. But in addition to these breathtaking archaeological sites, another art form, one of the most contemporary, is beginning to flood the country's walls...
As paradoxical as it is for this country with its almost thousand-year-old culture, Cambodia is witnessing the rapid development of a Street Art scene - an artistic movement using the public space as a medium for expression of its richest. The capital, Phnom Penh, is in the cradle and is adorned with graffiti for the pleasure of tourists and residents.
An art from elsewhere
Unusual in this region of the world, Street Art owes its import to certain Western backpackers, who, to mark their passage through the Khmer lands, have graffitied a trace of their journey on the walls of the capital. But we also owe it to the expatriate artists, who took this means of expression with them. Today, it is the Cambodian youth who express themselves on the city's abandoned buildings through breathtaking frescoes.
Cambodians at the top of the gender hierarchy
Many Cambodian artists stand out and become more and more known on the international Street Art scene. Lisa Mam is a perfect example: the first female graffiti artist with poetic frescoes, she stands out for her feminist commitment. There are also Daniel Ou, AKA Strange the Rabbit, David Myers and Kimchean Koy, talented young graffiti artists and collectors, whose creations are both influenced by an urban culture from elsewhere and by local culture, recognizable by the pattern in the colours of the works.
For those most interested, a festival dedicated to this new Street Art scene will be held in December in the Cambodian capital. Here is a photo overview of the frescoes and creations that you can admire during a walk in the streets of Phnom Penh. Find more information on the Facebook page of the event: https://bit.ly/2xpwWJl
Here is a photo overview of the frescoes and creations that you can admire during a walk in the streets of Phnom Penh.