Peace Art Project Cambodia
The project could not have happened without the support and participation of the Royal Government of Cambodia. PAPC was part of the ongoing public awareness campaign curbing small arms in Cambodia.
Sasha co-founded Peace Art Project Cambodia (PAPC) in October 2003, a sculpture project turning weapons into art as expressions of peace. Here is a synopsis of the project up until Oct 2004.
October – December 2003
Theory course to art students from the Royal University of Fine Arts (RUFA) focusing on 20 and 21 st century metal sculpture.
The PAPC workshop was set up in a warehouse in Phnom Penh run by the Development Technology Workshop (DTW). DTW have many projects including making the Tempest (a brush cutting machine used by de-mining agencies to clear vegetation before mines are detected and removed).
Mark Solomon (an American blacksmith and anti-gun campaigner) taught basic metal working and safety skills.
Students created sculptures using scrap metal.
In early Dec 876 destroyed weapons from a Khmer Rouge weapons cache in the Cardamom Mountains were transported to the PAPC workshop
January – March 2004
Joe Rush (a British sculptor who founded the Mutoid Waste Company in the mid 1980’s and creates sculpture from found objects) visited PAPC for 3 weeks.
The students began to make sculptures made with destroyed weapons.
Halo Trust in Siem Reap donated exploded ordnance, ammunition and tripods to the PAPC workshop.
Tim Page (Vietnam War photographer) along with Megan Cullen and Adam Ferguson (photo journalist graduates from Griffith University in Brisbane) documented PAPC activities. See Photographs in Photographers Gallery section.
PAPC was publicly launched with 3 consecutive events:
- Press launch at the Foreign Correspondents Club (FCC) in Phnom Penh including presentations and slide shows by PAPC, EU ASAC and Tim Page.
- Outdoor exhibition at the Night of a Thousand Dinners at the Canadian Ambassadors residency.
- ‘Elements’ exhibition at Java Café/Gallery in Phnom Penh.
PAPC team attended a ‘Flame of Peace’ destruction ceremony in Kompong Cham, 3,770 weapons were later transported to the PAPC workshop.
International media coverage including CNN, AP, Reuters, ABC, NZTV, Japan Daily News, Deutsche Zeitung, Phnom Penh Post, Cambodge Soir etc
Exploded ordnance from Mines Advisory Group (MAG) donated to PAPC workshop including B52 casings.
DTW Incubator Park officially inaugurated by the British Ambassador and attended by the PAPC team.
April – October 2004
Toby Poolman (a British furniture designer) began a furniture design making course.
6 PAPC students completed a mural commission at Abacus Art Space in Siem Reap and attended the opening of ‘Elements I’ at Abacus.
Sculptures were exhibited at the Mines Advisory Group (MAG) office, Talkin to a Stranger and Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) in Phnom Penh.
Mark Solomon returned for a second visit to teach the students more advanced metal working skills with an emphasis on manipulating metal using the forge.
Australian Embassy of Phnom Penh commissioned a “Bird of Peace” sculpture to be sited publicly in Phnom Penh. The 2 Cambodian students selected for the commission were Chhay Bunna and Sophon Samkhan.
Governor of Phnom Penh H.E Kep Chuk Tema visited the PAPC workshop with an Australian Embassy delegation.
‘Elements II’ exhibition opened at the French Cultural Centre in Siem Reap. Sculptures were also displayed in Amansara gardens.
Unveiling of the “Bird of Peace” sculpture in Sanderson Park, Phnom Penh with opening speeches by the Australian Ambassador, Governor of Phnom Penh and Sophon Samkhan.
PAPC sculptures were displayed at the US Ambassadors residency in Phnom Penh. The event was opened by Ambassador Charles Ray.
5 of the PAPC team visited Griffith University in Brisbane as part of a cultural exchange. The visit culminated with the exhibition ‘Aftermath’ with photographs by Tim Page, Megan Cullen and Adam Ferguson and sculptures by the 3 Cambodian students Ou Vanndy, Sophon Samkhan and Thorn Tourneakea.
- Royal Government of Cambodia
- European Union Assistance on Curbing Small Arms and Light Weapons
- Royal University of Fine Arts in Phnom Penh
- Development Technology Workshop
- Halo Trust
- Mines Advisory Group
- Griffith University
- European Union Assistance on Curbing Small Arms and Light Weapons in Cambodia
- Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia
- Angelina Jolie
- Emma Thompson
- Mr and Mrs Constable
- Mr and Mrs Brocklebank
- Stella Tenant