Day 1 (Part 3 of 3): A Surprise Cambodian Arts & Crafts Reprise
After my walk to Siem Reap’s Old Market for beautiful textile products galore, I decided to continue walking on to Artisans d’Angkor, which I spotted on my map and was naturally intrigued by. Again, I don’t really remember how long I was walking, but it was probably around 15 minutes away from the Old Market.
I didn’t realize it was one of the very same places I visited some 5 years ago on a very touristy trip to Siem Reap with my parents and their badminton friends. I was still glad to be there to admire yet again and be able to share it with you, my lovely readers.
Artisans d’Angkor (see contact details at the end of this entry) has a variety of workshops at their Chantiers-Ecoles branch (main branch) including stone and woodcarving, lacquering, silver plating & silk painting workshops.
[Loom with silk threads and cocoons]
[Silk-painting artisans at work]
[Steps in creating lacquer products]
I admire Artisans d’Angkor for what they created, and let me briefly explain that with some text from their materials:
“[Artisans d’Angkor was created in 1992]…to help young people find work in their home village and thus increase their families’ income and slow down rural depopulation. It provides them with 9 to 12 months high-skilled training and a vocation from which they can make a living…
…Artisans d’Angkor strives to promote fair trade in Cambodia…
…allows Cambodians to retrive their cultural heritage so as to build their pride in their roots.”
I LOVE efforts in cultural preservation, particularly for arts and crafts, and I wish someone would create a similar movement in the Philippines, since we also have a very rich cultural heritage in arts & crafts that may be dying due to rural depopulation thanks to the false notion that moving to Manila will automatically give them better opportunities. Hope I can do something about that too but I wouldn’t know where to start or who to get in touch with, but yeah that’s another blog post on its own, really.
So that was the last stop of my Nomad Manager Cambodian Arts & Crafts Walking Tour, the total cost of which was $9, inclusive of a $9 handmade silk scarf from the Old Market. :D
I’ll be going away from the “city center” to visit the Hariharalaya Retreat Center for about a week’s worth of yoga, meditation and vegan meals. :) I don’t know how much internet access I’ll have from there, but I’ve queued a couple of posts to keep you moderately entertained. So until then, leah sen hai!