Press Release: Our Books is pleased to announce the ‘soft launch’ of our permanent exhibition space at ‘Rik Reay‘ Restaurant, Street 178, 69c.
Our first exhibition features art from ’24 Hour Comics Day 2012′ by Sao Sreymao, Veejay Joson, Peou Ty, Seng Visal, Kim Phally (Our Books Graphic Designer), Sin Yang Pirom, and Chan Pisey. (Running from February 28th to March 12.)
By exhibiting at a local Khmer restaurant, we aim to engage people with comics outside of a gallery context, as a part of their daily life.
Future exhibitions will feature a diverse selection of art, from NGO outreach projects to new creative efforts from local artists.
Rik Reay restaurant is open from 6am to 12 noon. For further exhibition inquiries, please get in touch with Our Books.
A visit today with Andreas Knigge from Germany!
Andreas is a comics scholar / writer with Cambodian family, and is turning his eye to Cambodian comics.
We were happy to oblige and shared numerous comics, research, and ideas.
You can see more of his work at: http://www.acknigge.de
(Photo credit: Vannak Eng)
- plus a plethora of related links.
For more about the meetup, click below for the full report.
Patrick Samnang Mey is releasing the first volume of his graphic novel series Eugénie in English, with a launch taking place at ‘The Empire’ this coming Friday. (34, street 130 Phnom Penh, Cambodia).
Book launch and opening exhibition!
- Originally published in French in 3 volumes, EUGÉNIE will be released in a single opus for its ENGLISH VERSION!
– Drawings + paintings will be exhibited!
– Signed copies of the book available on the night!
- Free food buffet!
– Kir/Kir royale $2.50!
EUGÉNIE by P.S.M
240 pages in Black and white, Watercolour and Indian Ink
Venue information here: http://www.the-empire.org/
Event Facebook Page:
Whew! This year Our Books facilitated participation in ‘Global 24 Hour Comics Drawing Day’, held at Romeet Gallery from 8am to 5pm, October 20th. It was the 5th time our team has assisted in a ’24 hour’ drawing day project.
Those not living in Cambodia may not be aware that King-Father Norodom Sihanouk passed away a few days previously. Most parties and celebratory events have been canceled during this national period of mourning.
After some deliberation we decided to opt for a quiet, eight hour drawing day based on our ‘Cambodian Variation’ from prior years: one artist / one hour / one page. Finding time to draw for Khmer artists is a challenge, and this option allows them to squeeze a few hours of drawing into a busy schedule of work/school/family life.
Our Books Graphic Designer Kim Phally was on hand to scan and web up art, while Assistant Project Manager Nhim Soknea assisted with logistics. Sao Sreymao served as our ‘artist guide’ for visitors new to the event. Many thanks to Romeet (in particular Curator Kate O’Hara) for making their space available!
Above: untitled comic by Seng Visal
It was an enjoyable day, catching up with old and new friends: classic 1980s artist Sin Yang Pirom, freelancer Sen Samondara, acclaimed young artists Chan Pisey, Seng Visal and Peou Ty, teacher VJ Joson, graphic novelist Patrick Samnang Mey, and many more!
As always, it was great to see the global comics community gearing up for a full day of comics, and be a small part of this. Below are some samples of the comics produced – more to come from the participants in following days! Much of the artwork initially went up on the event’s Facebook page.
(For the curious, our Flickr set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/comicslifestyle/sets/72157631817052415/ )
(Mak Mak – Chan Pisey)
(The Bibliophile – VJ Joson)
All content copyright © Our Books or © artists cited unless otherwise noted.
Once a year, cartoonists around the world participate in 24 Hour Comics Day! Romeet Gallery will host our Cambodian crew on October 20, 2012 joining cartoonists all over the planet who are attempting to draw 24 pages in 24 hours.
The 24 Hour Comic is a ‘free drawing’ exercise designed to unlock creativity. Our Books has been developing Project: 24 since October 2008 to gradually introduce Cambodian artists to this unique exercise and the global comics community.
As with prior years, we offer participants a ‘Cambodian Variation’: One artist — one page — one hour of the day. Many Khmer artists have jobs, school, and family obligations, but all artists who have an hour to spare are welcome to join the fun!
This year marks the fifth time Cambodian comic artists will attempt to a full drawing day (counting participation in Australia’s ComiKaze drawing day). Cambodian and overseas artists are welcome to join the drawing marathon at Romeet’s space, beginning at 8am SHARP October 20.
Art supplies, paper, and coffee will be provided until 8am the following morning. Artists who would care to share their work can do so live on the web, or via a compilation PDF/ebook assembled the following week
Artwork can be posted on the Romeet workspace walls during the workshop process. A live webcam linkup and Twitter feed will be accessible via http://SiewPhewYeung.org.kh/24 .
Pages may be sold at the discretion of the artist. We ask that interested visitors please respect the artists’ creative process.
‘Best of’ pages from 2008 and 2009 are being collected in print and have been archived on the web as a ‘Who’s Who’ of contemporary Khmer comic art by Our Books, as well as sent to the permanent 24 Hour Comics archive.
Event Time: 8am Saturday October 20 to 8am Sunday October 21.
Event Location: Street 178, Phnom Penh, Phnum Penh, Cambodia
Event on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/events/100355440121465/
+855 (0)12 526 840 (John, Our Books)
ជារៀងរាល់ឆ្នាំ អ្នកគូរគំនូរជីវចលនៅជុំវិញពិភពលោក តែងនាំគ្នាចូលរួមក្នុងទិវាគំនូរជីវចល២៤ម៉ោង។ ដូចគ្នាដែរ នៅថ្ងៃទី២០ ខែតុលា ឆ្នាំ២០១២ នេះ Romeet Gallery នឹងរៀបចំទទួលនូវក្រុមវិចិត្រកររបស់កម្ពុជាយើង ដែលរួមមានការអញ្ជើញចូលរួមពីសំណាក់អ្នកគូរគំនូរជីវចលនៅជុំវិញពិភពលោកផងដែរ ហើយពួកគេទាំងអស់គ្នានឹងព្យាយាមគូរគំនូរឲ្យបាន ២៤ ទំព័រក្នុងរយៈពេល ២៤ ម៉ោង។
ការគូរគំនូរជីវចល២៤ម៉ោង គឺជាលំហាត់ “គូររូបដោយសេរី” មួយ ដែលធ្វើឡើងដើម្បីបំផុសនូវគំនិតច្នៃប្រឌិតថ្មីៗបន្ថែមទៀត។ អង្គការ Our Books បានបង្កើតគម្រោង៖ ២៤ ម៉ោង ចាប់តាំងពីខែតុលា ឆ្នាំ២០០៨ មកម្ល៉េះ ដើម្បីណែនាំវិចិត្រករកម្ពុជាឲ្យស្គាល់ជាបណ្តើរៗនូវកិច្ចការដ៏ពិសេសតែមួយគត់នេះ និងសហគមន៍គំនូរជីវចលសាកល។
ដូចឆ្នាំមុនៗដែរ យើងផ្ដល់ជូនដល់អ្នកចូលរួមទាំងឡាយនូវ ‘ការផ្លាស់ប្តូររបស់កម្ពុជា’៖ វិចិត្រករម្នាក់ – គំនូរមួយទំព័រ - មួយម៉ោងក្នុងមួយថ្ងៃ។ វិចិត្រករខ្មែរជាច្រើនមានកាតព្វកិច្ចការងារជាច្រើនដែលត្រូវបំពេញ ដូចជាការងារសាលា និងកាតព្វកិច្ចគ្រួសារជាដើម ប៉ុន្តែវិចិត្រករទាំងឡាយណាដែលមានពេលទំនេរត្រឹមតែមួយម៉ោង គឺត្រូវបានស្វាគមន៍ឲ្យចូលរួមក្នុងទិវាដ៏សប្បាយរីករាយនេះ!
ឆ្នាំនេះ គឺជាលើកទីបួន ដែលវិចិត្រករគំនូរជីវចលកម្ពុជា នឹងព្យាយាមសម្រេចឲ្យបានជារូបរាងនូវទិវាគំនូរជីវចលមួយនេះ (នឹងរាប់បញ្ចូលការចូលរួមនៅក្នុងទិវាគូរគំនូរ ComiKaze របស់ប្រទេសអូស្ត្រាលីផងដែរ)។ វិចិត្រករកម្ពុជា និងបរទេស ត្រូវបានស្វាគមន៍ឲ្យចូលរួមក្នុងការគូរគំនូរម៉ារ៉ាតុង នៅបរិវេណជាន់ទី១នៃអាគារ Romeet ដោយចាប់ផ្ដើមពីម៉ោង ៨ ព្រឹកគត់ នៅថ្ងៃទី២០ ខែតុលា។
សម្ភារគូរគំនូរ ក្រដាស និងកាហ្វេ នឹងត្រូវបានផ្តល់ជូនរហូតដល់ម៉ោង ៨ ព្រឹក នៃថ្ងៃបន្ទាប់។ វិចិត្រករទាំងឡាយណាដែលចង់ចែករំលែកស្នាដៃរបស់ខ្លួន អាចចែករំលែកបានដោយផ្ទាល់នៅលើវែបសាយត៍ ឬតាមរយៈកម្រង PDF/ebook ដែលត្រូវបានប្រមូលចងក្រងនៅសប្ដាហ៍បន្ទាប់។
បុគ្គលិកមកពីអង្គការ Our Books ដែលជាអង្គការគំនូរមិនស្វែងរកប្រាក់ចំណេញនៃប្រទេសកម្ពុជា (Nhim Soknea, Kim Phally) នឹងជួយពិនិត្យ ស្កេន រាល់សន្លឹកការងារ និងជួយសម្រួលរាល់សំណុំឯកសារទាំងឡាយនៅក្នុងព្រឹត្តិកាណ៍នោះ។
ស្នាដៃសិល្បៈរបស់លោកអ្នកអាចនឹងត្រូវបានបិទនៅលើជញ្ជាំងវិចិត្រសាលរបស់ Romeet កំឡុងពេលដែលព្រឹត្តិការណ៍នោះកំពុងដំណើរការ។ អ្នកអាចចូលមើលព័ត៌មានបានតាមរយៈ Webcam និង Twitter បាន តាមរយៈ http://SiewPhewYeung.org.kh/24។
សន្លឹករូបនានា អាចត្រូវបានដាក់លក់ អាស្រ័យលើការសម្រេចចិត្តរបស់វិចិត្រករ។ យើងស្នើសុំដល់អ្នកទស្សនាដែលមានចំណាប់អារម្មណ៍ចូលរួម សូមគោរពរាល់ដំណើរការដែលប្រកបដោយភាពច្នៃប្រឌិតផេ្សងៗរបស់វិចិត្រករ។
គំនូរដែលមានស្នាដៃល្អៗបំផុតកាលពីឆ្នាំ២០០៨ និងឆ្នាំ២០០៩ កំពុងត្រូវបានចងក្រងជាឯកសារបោះពុម្ព និងត្រូវបានរក្សាទុកនៅលើវែបសាយត៍ជា Who’s Who នៃសិស្បៈគំនូរជីវចលខ្មែរសម័យបច្ចុប្បន្នរបស់អង្គការ Our Books ព្រមទាំងត្រូវបានបញ្ជូនទៅកាន់បណ្ណាសាររបស់គំនូរជីវចល២៤ម៉ោង (24 Hour Comics) ផងដែរ។
ព្រឹត្តិការណ៍នេះនឹងប្រព្រឹត្តិទៅ៖ ម៉ោង ៨ ព្រឹក ថ្ងៃសៅរ៏ ទី២០ ខែតុលា ដល់ម៉ោង ៨ ព្រឹក ថ្ងៃអាទិត្យ ទី២១ ខែតុលា ឆ្នាំ២០១២។
ទីកន្លែងប្រារព្វ៖ វិចិត្រសាល Romeet ផ្លូវលេខ ១៧៨ រាជធានីភ្នំពេញ កម្ពុជា
Romeet on Web:
ព្រឹត្តិការណ៍នៅលើទំព័រ Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/events/100355440121465/
+855 (0)12 526 840 (John, Our Books)
+855 (0)92 95 71 71 (Soknea, Our Books)
+855 (0) 92 953 567 (Kate O’Hara, Romeet Gallery)
Sales of screenprinted, newsprint comics have been slowly declining for years. They’re not on the newsstands anymore, and not in popular bookshops either.
After taking some initial photos in August, Our Books followed up this week with an informal survey of book wholesalers at Psar O’Russey.
Newsprint comics are usually sold by comics ‘middlemen’ to wholesalers, who then sell them to other retailers or the public at prices ranging from 700 riel to 1000 riel depending on quantity. The middlemen take orders and distribute to bookshops from another location in O’Russey. (They do not seem keen to be interviewed, despite often having a phone number on their books.)
‘Uncle’ Sophal has been one of the biggest sellers of newsprint comics in the market for over 10 years.
He notes that tastes are changing. Middlemen have sometimes revised covers of decades-old stories to make them appear fresh. He notes that cheap, bilingual story books (with color interiors) are popular, and cutting into the comics market. For his shop, comics sales are definitely declining, due to customer taste. Currently they only have a few newsprint comics in stock, stored in a special rack.
Saing Lina Bookstore:
‘Aunty’ Lina (above, right) has been selling books since year 2000. She is enthusiastic about all her offerings, but notes that newsprint/screenprint comics tend to appeal to a younger (and dwindling) crowd. She concurs that readers prefer books with interior color pages and higher quality of printing – generally story books and other newer publications
Here she shares a storybook version of Sopaset (left) – competition for Em Satya‘s classic comic version. On the right is a storybook illustrated by comic artist Soeung Makara.
Leang Dalin Bookstore:
Previously, the store sold many newsprint comics; but now readers tend to prefer colorful story books – and Korean translated novels.
Cheap translated Thai humor comics (below, left) and Korean romance novels (below, right) were quite evident at the market. Virtually all translated Korean novels display manhwa style covers and rarely have copyright or ISBN numbers. It seems Khmer newsprint comics are definitely available – they’re just not in demand, which is the real source of the decline.
Photos: John Weeks. Interviews, John Weeks and Nhim Soknea
Surprise visit from Tomoko Okada of the Tokyo University for Foreign Studies!
Dr. Okada is a tireless teacher and an enthusiast for Khmer culture in Japan.
We caught up on comics drawn by Japanese artists (mangaka) in Cambodia, comics drawn about Cambodia, and issues pertaining to the indigenization of manga.
We were also honored this Monday to spend nearly two hours recording an interview with prolific artist Hul Sophon.
As one of the two last (known) surviving comics artists from the pre-revolutionary era, he had lots to share about literature both past and present.
While his covers are omnipresent at Cambodian bookshops, his relatively small number of comics were less lucky.
You can see his most recent work on novel covers, and childrens’ story books at Banteay Srei bookshop in Phnom Penh.
It was great to catch up! We welcome your budget (and curriculum vitae).