Monday, 7 December 2009

Snap shot in the dark

So I've come to this thing called photo Phnom Penh. Basically its an
exhibition of photos taken by a variety of pro/amiture photographers. These images are
then projected in sets across 12 screens on wat botum.
Now the images themselves are a mixed bag. Some real life captured
moments some arranged images some staged psudoe realism.

For me one of the most important things about this public exhibition
is the mixed reaction of its willing/unwilling audience.

See infront of each projector is a matted seating area. On each of
these mats sits a small handful of sparadic Barang onlookers.

Now at the side of the last screen about 500 Khmer people are gathered
the same as they do every night for the regular early evening mass
excercise sesion that is an inherent part of there day to day.

Anyway to look at them it would seam the majority of Khmer folk are at
the most non-pluses about the smorgasboard of imagery on display.
Now I'm a strong believer in judging art based on the reaction of its
audience and this thing here was reminisant of the several dozen
exhibitions/openings I squirmed through in my last year of uni.
See its the people on the matts I wonder about. The Barang. I wonder
what level of artistic importance they place on an event like this.

My personal opinion is that any good work on display here is
unfortunately lost or diluted amoungst a sea of averageness and
technical fault. The whole thing underpinned by a sense of ambivalence
and set to a soundtrack of badly skipping housey-jazz standards.
Still a few good works were prevalent and I did see at least 4
photographers I liked.

I'll try and add links later.

Sent from my iPod

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