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Khmer New Year Exhibition 2015

i Mar 30, 2015 Comments Off by



Cambodia is a fortunate country in that it celebrates New Year Day three times – for International New Year, Chinese New Year, and Khmer New Year.

Khmer New Year is primarily a cultural event and has many games and customs associated with it. Here, a selection of local Cambodian artists share their favorite reflections of the season. The creators include Kong Monirath, Hong Bora, Chan Pisey, Moeu Diyadaravuth, Try Samphos, Sao Sreymao, Tek Tevinn, Ly Karim, and Phal Poursith.
You can see the exhibition at Rik Reay Gallery (69c, Street 178, Phnom Penh, Cambodia), from March 30th to April 27th.

Prum Vannak Exhibition: ‘Before and Today’

i Nov 18, 2013 Comments Off by

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Ilustrator and cartoonist Prum Vannak is largely self-taught, and takes his inspiration from the world around him.

He has received acclaim in using his art to depict the harsh reality of his time spent trapped on a Thai fishing boat, and is a survivor of labor trafficking. This led to an award from the US Department of State, and his art being featured in a documentary film and on the Radio Free Asia web site.

Unlike most Cambodian illustrators who chase freelance work in Phnom Penh, Vannak lives with his family in rural Pursat and is working hard to make a living from commercial art. While he is famous internationally, his income and his daily life in the village have not changed much.

This exhibition explores the two worlds the artist lives in.

For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact OurBooksCambodia.org

The exhibition will take place Wednesday November 20th  to Saturday December 14th  at Rik Reay Gallery, Phnom Penh.

Venue:  Rik Reay shop, 69c, Street 178, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Contact: John Weeks +885 (0)12 526 840  / Soeun Klo 017 626 207  Landline: 023 990 706

Links: http://www.phnompenhpost.com/index.php/2010120245133/National-news/never-ending-cycle-the-human-cost-of-slave-labour.html

24 Hour Comics Drawing Day 2013: The Biggest Yet

i Oct 3, 2013 1 Comment by

Our Books Team 01

In addition to celebrating 5 years of ‘24 Hour Comics‘ with our ‘Strip All Night‘ exhibition at Java Cafe,
Our Books and friends dived into year six on Saturday the 28th.

We produced in excess of sixty pages, and had our biggest turnout yet of both professionals and amateurs.
We would like to thank our ‘artist guides’ Sao Sreymao and Moeu ‘Vuth’ Diyadaravuth for assisting the Our Books team in orienting participants and encouraging newcomers.

Many elected to do the ‘Cambodian Variation’ of ‘One Hour / One Comic’ but stuck around for a little more.

Due to Cambodia’s Pchum Ben holiday our event was held one week early. To encourage other participants during this global event, Our Books will be Facebooking and Twittering art and photos this coming Saturday October 05.

Stay tuned for selections from 2013’s offerings on Java Cafe‘s walls, and also at Rik Reay gallery / noodle shop!

For now, here are some pictures and pages to pique your interest.

021_Jan Comics_All Join


Photo Set http://goo.gl/uaagfr
Comic Pages http://goo.gl/cnvWN1
Blog Coverage: 24-Hour Comics Day Again!
24 Hour comics networking site: http://www.24hourcomicsday.com

’Strip All Night’ Exhibition Kicks off 24 Hour Comics Drawing Day!

i Sep 18, 2013 Comments Off by

Once a year, cartoonists around the world participate in 24 Hour Comics Day!

24 Hour Comics 2013_Title_For Web

The 24 Hour Comic is a ‘free drawing’ exercise designed to unlock creativity. Our Books has been facilitating this event 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!

For 2013, Java Arts Gallery will host an exhibition spotlighting five years of 24 Hour Comics called ‘Up All Night’ (Friday September 27th). Java will host the yearly drawing day on Saturday, September 28th from 8am to 8pm.

‘StripAll Night’ will feature professional and amateur art archived by Our Books Cambodia from prior drawing events at Java, Romeet Gallery and ‘The Living Room’, among others. http://www.facebook.com/events/162249207313002/

From its initial foray in 2008, Our Books has pioneered ‘The Cambodian Variation’ for busy artists. Since Khmer artists often have several jobs, school and family obligations, they were invited to select an hour of the day to complete a full 24 hours of drawings, reflecting daily life in Cambodia. A collection of these drawings (‘Our Day’) is in progress, and samples will be shown on the 27th.

’24 Hour Comics Drawing Day’ will start at 8:00 on Saturday September 28th. Coffee, art materials, food and a dedicated drawing space will be provided. For participants with children, a play room is available.

Last year’s session was a modest effort and closed early due to the King-Father’s Funeral.
This year, ‘Global’ 24 Hour Drawing day will fall October 05-06, during the nationwide Pchum Ben religious holiday. Comics from the event on the 28th will be exhibited immediately, and shared via social media on October 05th.

Java and Our Books welcome all participants, amateurs and professionals, to join our Friday exhibition and our Saturday drawing day. Feel free to draw and catch up with other artists, be it for a brief catch-up or a marathon session. Artist guides Sao Sreymao and Moeu ‘Vuth’ Diyadaravuth will be on hand to assist with tools and materials, and Our Books staff (Nhim Soknea, Kim Phally) will be available to scan artwork for display and exhibition.

Event Time: Up All Night: 6pm – 8pm, September 27, Java Arts
24 Hour Drawing Day: 8am Sept 27 to 8am Sept 28, Java Arts
Event Location: Java Cafe & Gallery, 56 Sihanouk Boulevard, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
+855 (0)12 526 840 (John, Our Books)
+855 (0)92 95 71 71 (Soknea, Our Books)
+855 (0)17 626 207 (Klo, Our Books)

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/events/162249207313002/

‘The Advisor’ http://theadvisorcambodia.com/2013/09/one-day/



Angkor Impressions

i Sep 12, 2013 Comments Off by


Our Books is pleased to be exhibiting new material by comic artist Cliodhna Ztoical at Rik Reay Gallery / noodle shop from September 13 to 27.

A cartoonist and animator of Irish origin, ztoical_background_blogMs. Cliodhna works in the field of commercial illustration, comics and animation. She has worked in Ireland, the UK and New York.

She studied animation at Ballyfermot College in Dublin and comics at the School of Visual Arts in New York.

“Ztoical’s Comic Adventure 2013” brought her to Cambodia, where her sketches of Angkor Wat were drawn.

For more art and information, check out her web site, Ztoical.com.

Try Samphos Exhibition

i Jun 17, 2013 1 Comment by

From July 17 to 30th at Rik Reay gallery space: solo exhibition!


Ms. Try Samphos is a young Cambodian artist who creates visual art and comic art, utilizing traditional drawing and computer design. She has trained with Room To Read, SIPAR, and numerous education-related organizations including the Buddhist Institute.

Her diverse publication CV includes work with the Wildlife Conservation Society, PSI, Our Books, SIPAR and her own self-published imprint, Comics Art. She has also volunteered for the Cambodia Book Federation and assisted and participated in numerous workshops, seminars, trainings and art events.

She is one of a growing number of young artists who are familiar with traditional Cambodian culture and popular Khmer culture, speaking in her own voice with enthusiasm and innovation. This very brief exhibition shows a small sampling of her wide-ranging skills.

For more information on her diverse publications, you can visit her artist profile page at OurBooksCambodia.org or contact: Samphos2003@Yahoo.com.

An Equitable Exhibition

i Mar 18, 2013 Comments Off by

Currently exhibiting at Rik Reay gallery space: Art for Equity

Featuring illustrations produced for Equitable Cambodia, by Sen Samondara, ‘Vuth‘, and Tek Tevin.
Since 2006, Our Books has regularly worked to produce hundreds of illustrations to help explain Cambodia’s legal code.

Originally produced for Bridges Across Borders‘ Paralegal Manual, the illustrations have been recycled for numerous special interest publications. ‘BAB’ recently rebranded as ‘Equitable Cambodia‘, and has a wide range of programs and publications aiming to increase understanding and participation in Cambodia’s legal system.

This exhibition will run through April 30th and will rotate a variety of pictures by the featured artists.

Street 178, daily from 6am to 12 noon: #69c, Street 178, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

Equitable Cambodia Exhibition_Small

24 Hour Comics Day 2010 – The Aftermath

i Oct 4, 2010 Comments Off by

24 Hours Artist List 2010

It’s our second year in Cambodia as an official participant in International 24 Hour Drawing Day! Below are some selections of participating artists. The art is currently on display at Java Café, Phnom Penh, through the end of October.


It was a good mixed group this time, with local Cambodian participants as well as artists from the USA, Philippines and Vietnam. No one cracked the 24 page mark this year, closest was VJ Joson at 11 pages with ‘Magic Marker‘.  As per prior years, we offered the ‘Cambodian variation’ of one hour/artist/page, as shown by Try Samphos and Chuob Borin (below).



For those who want to see more, check out our photo set!

Postscript: Phnom Penh Post coverage:

24 Hour Comics Day, October 02 2010

i Sep 30, 2010 Comments Off by

Once a year, cartoonists around the world participate in 24 Hour Comics Day! Java Café & Gallery will host a Cambodian contingent 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.

This year marks the second time Cambodian comic artists will attempt to ‘go the distance’ for a full drawing day. Cambodian and overseas artists are welcome to join the drawing marathon at Java Café’s downstairs space, beginning at 8am SHARP October 02.

Art supplies, paper and coffee will be provided until 8am the following morning. One-page efforts from 2008 and 2009 will be posted as example and incentive for this year’s effort. (Our Books is developing a collection of these two years, ’48 Hours’. )

All artwork will be posted as it is finished on the walls of Java Café, to be exhibited for the following month. A live webcam linkup and Twitter feed will be accessible via http://www.javaarts.org/24/ . Staff from Cambodia’s comics nonprofit Our Books will be on hand to scan pages and assist overall documentation of the event.

  • Artists: bring your ideas and enthusiasm, we will see who makes it to 8am the following morning!
  • Amateurs: all nationalities are welcome, regardless of your skill level, please feel free to give it a try!
  • Enthusiasts: enjoy reading comics? Check in on use in person or via the web to see art in action and cheer us on! We’ll need all the encouragement we can get!

Pages will be on sale at the discretion of the artist. (We request that they remain on display at Java for the following month’s display.)

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 exhibition!

‘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 02 to 8am Sunday October 03.

Event Location: Java Café & Gallery, 56e1 Sihanouk Blvd, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Event on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=157967840889207

+855 (0)12 526 840 (John, Our Books)
+855 (0) 12 894 180 (Dana, Java Café)


24 Hour Comics Day 2009 – Exhibition (and aftermath)

i Oct 5, 2009 1 Comment by


Every picture tells a story, and you can see them at Java Cafe and Gallery all this next month in Phnom Penh!


A stalwart crew arrived and each participant managed to adhere to the ‘one page / one hour’ rule! Thanks to Try Samphos, Qudy Xu, Lina Lim, Nhek Sophealeap, Soeung Makara, Tuy Chanthoeurn, Moeu Diyadaravuth, Sebastian Marot, Tek Tevin, Pou Chakriya, Sao Channa, and special thanks to Sim Sisavuthara and Kheng Vanleab for technical support!

Comics were scanned as we go and archived on Flickr, Comics Lifestyle, and will be sent to the International 24 Hour comics archive.


Kudos to Peou Ty and Sao Sreymao (1st and 2nd, respectively) for their overnight stint doing long stories! A night to remember!



More observation and commentary: blogger/Asialife writer Nathalie Abejero.