Naima Morelli

Archive
Cambodia

KhiangHei
Sometimes when I start an art exploration in a new country of Southeast Asia, I can be lucky enough to meet a figure which becomes a guide of sorts. This person usually helps me entangle the key mechanisms of the art system, and understand the psychology of local artists.

In Cambodia, this figure was Khiang Hei. In this interview published on CoBo, we tackled the most pressing issues together in the emerging Cambodian art scene. With an understanding of the local hardships, as well as a very pragmatic spirit, Khiang suggested possible solutions, some of which he has implemented himself over the years.

The piece is part of my reportage on Cambodian contemporary art.

Here is the link to the interview

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SophalNeak
In the third installment of CoBo’s series on Cambodian photographers, I spoke with artist Sophal Neak, a rising talent in the Cambodian scene. This piece is part of my reportage on Cambodian contemporary art.

Here is the link to the interview

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SopheapPich

At the beginning of the year I visited Cambodian artist Sopheap Pich in his Phnom Penh studio. He explained his view of contemporary art in Cambodia and what young artists need in order to grow the local art scene. The article is part of my reportage on Cambodian contemporary art.

Here is the link to the interview

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KanithaTith
Another interview with a super-interesting Khmer artist has been published on CoBo, as part of my reportage on contemporary art in Cambodia. For this piece I spoke with Kanitha Tith, one of the young, emerging voices in the artistic landscape, who is gaining more and more recognition internationally.

In the article she tell about her creative process and what it means to be a multi-passionate creative in Phnom Penh.

Here is the link to the interview

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VannNath1

I’m honored and humbled to have had the chance of writing about the work of an extraordinary artist and human being such as Cambodian painter Vann Nath. The piece is out in the new issue of Art Republik and is part of the Cambodia reportage I realized in February. This is the fifth piece about Cambodian art I did for the magazine, and I’m so happy to have these beautiful pages as an outlet for the research.

In the article, which I wrote in conjunction of the publication in Italy of Vann Nath’s memoir by ADD Editore “Il pittore dei khmer rossi”, I traced the legacy of this artist on Cambodian contemporary art, and how his example and practice influenced the new generations of artists in the Kingdom.

Here is the link to the pdf version of the piece

 

VannNath2

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SreyBandol
I can’t be more happy and grateful when I see a new article of mine on the homepage of CoBo Social. It still gives me the same buzz of 10 years ago, when I was just starting out writing for online magazines.

This interview with Srey Bandol, co-founder of the art school Phare Ponleu Selapak in Battambang, Cambodia, is particularly rewarding because it is a part of the reportage on Cambodian contemporary art I did at the beginning of the year. I really hope that through these articles CoBo and I will be able to give a more complete picture of the art scene in this fascinating country.

Here is the link to the interview

 

 

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stilness3
Back with some updates from my life. There is noting better than a warm, sleepy Saturday morning without super-urgent deadlines for articles, to stop for a second and ponder and reflect on the amazing ride I have been on since the beginning of the year. Basically, a moment of quiet to park the horse and smell the roses. I feel this is somewhat necessary to have a clearer picture of my narrative, because of course it’s a story, but we humans need to make sense of things, and it’s fun, and my heart longs for it! I feel that when I’m talking with friends I tend to focus on the problems, maybe because I have identify them as the alley to let it all out. But my public writing, whether for these occasional rants or even in my articles, is really the place where I feel compelled to look at beauty, while not shying away from complexity. I feel it’s my wiser self talking, and I’m happy to get raw and vulnerable. Well, most of the times!

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MetaMoeng
Here we go with a new article from my Cambodia reportage; it’s so great to see all the fruits from my research coming out little by little and share all this beauty – this time through the web platform Culture360 which is all about creating trans-continental connections.

And I’m super grateful to have met art manager and Kon Len Khnhom founder Met Moeng during my trip to Phnom Penh.  Coming from an art system where people don’t have to do things in the arts out of necessity, but more for individualistic reasons, it’s very heartening to see someone who daily embodies the word “service”. Through founding her own art space Kon Len Khnhom Meta really stretched herself beyond her limits, proving that it’s possible to do it if you are willing to let go of control and you are guided by sheer passion.

Coming into contact with her passion and determination was a real blast, and keeps on inspiring me!

Here is the link to the piece 

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stievselapak

Little by little parts of my Cambodia research/reportage are coming out in the press: here is a piece on the Phnom Penh-based supergroup Stiev Selapak which has just been published on the Singapore-based art magazine Art Republik. Can’t wait to have the physical copy in my hands!

Here is the link to the article

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talk7
What a nice evening at Kon Len Khnhom, the contemporary art space run in Phnom Penh, Cambodia by art manager Meta Moeng! It was great to finally see the space in person after hearing so much about it; this is a traditional Khmer house tucked in a small alley right in the city center, where they held residences, events and do projects with students.

Yesterday night I held a talk talking about my experience researching emerging art scenes, from Indonesia to Singapore, and I discussed with the audience about the features of the Cambodian contemporary art scene and the local art market. The atmosphere was so nice and cozy and elicited reflections; really my jam! Below some pictures from the night.

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konlen
This Saturday 10th February 2018 I’m going to have a talk at the art space in Kon Len Khnhom in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

For this art talk, I’ll be sharing about my own experience and methodology in researching the emerging art scenes. Meanwhile, I will also present my findings about the Cambodian art scene so far and ask feedback from the audience to analyse together these different aspect of the art scene.

Please drop by if you are in town!

Here is the link to the fb event

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KimHak

CoBo Social has just published my interview with Cambodian photographer Kim Hak as the first of a three-part series on Cambodian photographers. In this piece I talk with Kim Hak about the special role photography holds in Cambodia for the collective memory.

Here is the link to the interview

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