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Printmaking in Cambodia: Timeless

Showcasing prints and wood etchings by students and professors from RUFA, along with well-known artists using the same techniques, Timeless exhibition is closing at Plantation Urban Resort on May 12. Still time to admire and buy artwork!

"Printmaking, which was used in the country in the 1950s and 1960s, virtually disappeared during the Khmer Rouge era, only to return in the 2000s, thanks to the support of Mexican artists, said Chan Vitharin, a printmaking enthusiast and a professor at the Royal University of Fine Arts (RUFA) in Phnom Penh." This is from the article by Teng Yalirozy published on Cambodianess website, 11 April 2024.

Since 2011, the CHAR-RUFA Printmaking Studio has consisted of 16 professional artists who have worked to teach this technique and bring back this artform in the country. The project has involved Mexican artists who volunteered to obtain a lithography press, the material required to use it, and to have this sent by ship from Mexico. "The exhibition in Phnom Penh includes works done when the press was first set up in the early 2010s as well as lithography works from today’s students at RUFA," goes on the review; "artworks from different periods are being presented so that visitors can get an idea of the timelessness of the works done by artists from generation to generation.

“It is timeless because our journey does not end,” Vitharin said. “We start, and we continue endlessly.” Over the years, there has been a few exhibitions in Phnom Penh featuring lithography works done at the studio. However, in the exhibition “Timeless,” Vitharin said, “[today’s] young students can show their work to the public…It’s exciting that all artworks from the printmaking studio…can be displayed all together.”  

Opened 8 April, the exhibition has been a success for participating artists. You still have an opportunity to purchase prints, thus helping RUFA printing studio, Char Rufa - part of proceeds go to the studio --... and give the students a chance to enjoy their very first copyright!

Moments of the exhibition opening at Plantation, Phnom Penh.

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