Month: June 2014

Coming Exhibition: Leang Seckon ~ Hell on Earth

“Leang Seckon ~ Hell on Earth “


Who:  Rossi Rossi ~ London Gallery

When: June 27, 2014 – July 25, 2014 (Mon-Sat. 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.)



How Much:  Reservations recommended with information on their website.

More Information: Here

Rossi & Rossi is pleased to announce Hell on Earth, contemporary Cambodian artist Leang Seckon’s second solo show with the gallery. The exhibition, held at Asia House, London, features a body of recent paintings, collages and video works by the artist.

Seckon grew up during the devastating period of Khmer Rouge rule, witnessing firsthand the government-enforced policies that led to famine and disease, as well as state executions. He describes this period as “hell on earth”, when the haunting prophecies found in a set of popular nineteenth-century Buddhist texts, the Buddh Damnay, were realized: “war will break out on all sides…blood will flow up to the bellies of elephants; there will be houses with no people in them, roads upon which no-one travels; there will be rice but nothing to eat”. The prophecies provided Cambodians with an explanation for the violence and destruction of the Khmer Rouge, placing the period within the cyclical pattern of Buddhist history.

The artist’s collages and paintings are intimate narratives of his memories from the period and the civil war that followed. The process of creating artworks simultaneously allows him to experience and express the freedom that was denied to him as a youth. However, Seckon’s work also acts as a warning: like the Buddh Damnay, it cautions against corruption and the destruction of the environment, drawing parallels between Cambodia’s present and its past.

A fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by renowned curator Jens Hoffmann accompanies the exhibition.

On 28 June, Leang Seckon will be joined by Dr. Peter Sharrock (SOAS) to discuss the artist’s approaches to his work and the impact of Cambodia’s turbulent and complex history on his practice. The talk is free to attend, however seat reservations are recommended. To reserve a seat please visit:”


4,000-Year-Old Burial with Chariots Discovered in South Caucasus

4,000-Year-Old Burial with Chariots Discovered in South Caucasus

by Owen  Jarus via “Yahoo!News

4,000-Year-Old Burial with Chariots Discovered in South Caucasus

An ancient burial containing chariots, gold artifacts and possible human sacrifices has been discovered by archaeologists in the country of Georgia, in the south Caucasus. (more…)

Culture and Carpets: Discovering Turkmenistan Through Its Art

“Culture and Carpets: Discovering  Turkmenistan Through Its Art “

by Jessica P Hayden via “GoNOMAD

As we drove down the tree lined streets, we passed rows of tiny, one-floor houses that sat just yards away from the road side.  I watched through the window as children scurried from one side of the road to the other, playing what appeared to be a game of tag.  Women, dressed in brightly colored textiles, were gathered at the corner of one street, watching their children, gossiping.

We were headed to meet Gurban, a local carpet dealer, at his house in Ashgabat.  My husband and I had flown to Turkmenistan for a long weekend.

While many regions along the Silk Road produce unique carpets, Turkmen rugs have become well known in the West, due to their high quality and beauty. The art of carpet weaving has been handed down from generation to generation and is central to the Turkmen culture.  Each tribe has its own specific patterns and symbols which represent aspects of life which hold great importance.Since moving to Central Asia, our friends had repeatedly advised us, “You must visit Ashgabat if you have the chance – it is like nothing you’ve ever experienced or are likely to experience again.”  Part of this fascination with Turkmenistan comes from the unique political system and president who posts his portrait on every available wall space in the city.  But the bigger allure for us was the chance to explore a land with ancient cultures and traditions that was once part of the Silk Road.

The Silk Road runs through Central Asia and was a major trading route connecting the West to the East for hundreds of years.  In fact, it was the famed traveler, Marco Polo who was the first to mention Turkmen carpets in the 13th century. 
Gurban and his family have been selling Turkmen carpets for years from their house and in the Tolkuchka bazaar (the Sunday market). As we entered a Spartan yet beautiful courtyard, a sea of carpets covered the concrete floor. The deep red and orange rugs gave such an aura of warmth it was hard to not feel immediately welcomed into their home.

Gurban invited us into his house for lunch and offered us a feast of chicken, plov (traditional Central Asian rice dish) fruit, fresh juices and tea. We sat on the floor, chatting with our new friends.  The smaller children played hide and seek with us, peeking their heads in the door, smiling and flirting.  In the corner of the room a black and white television played a video-tape of a recent family wedding.  The new bride now sat beside us, holding her new born child and pregnant with her second. 


Fine Art Comes of Age in the UAE

Fine Art Comes of Age in the UAE

by Suchitra Bajpai Chaudhary via “Gulf News

Dubai: The month-long art season in Dubai that concluded last week demonstrated the maturity and coming of age of the art market here, further establishing Dubai as the regional art hub.

Several record-breaking auctions were conducted dring the season. With over 60 art galleries and museums in the city, viewing and buying art has is now an established part of Dubai’s cultural agenda. The scope of this development over the last eight or nine years can be gauged from the fact that in a span of a month, Dubai now hosts an active art calendar with the Dubai art week, Design days and Sikka art fairs all happening simultaneously.

“ It is phenomenal how Dubai developed into the art space in the past eight-nine years.” Hala Khayat, Head of Sales at Christie’s, UAE.

  “Art is an alternative asset and does not replace traditional assets. It is used to alleviate the risk in your traditional financial portfolio. When stocks and bonds go down, art goes up.”
 ” This synergy has attracted art curators and galleries from around the world to display and interact here. This has helped Dubai evolve into an attractive art trade market.

All major auction houses and art fund houses have opened offices here and have been doing robust business. This is proof that good art sells at a high price and there are as many buyers in the market here as sellers.

The Pharaoh’s Collection of Modern Egyptian Art, expected to sell for around $1.4 million (Dh4.68 million) made $3.89 million (Dh 14.03 million). The top lot of the sale, also from the Collection, was Abdul Hadi El-Gazzar’s (Egyptian, 1925-1965)Construction of the Suez Canal which sold for $1.02 million, a new world auction record for the artist. . . . .”


Week of Culture: The Second Day

Week of Culture: The Second Day

via “State News Agency of Turkmenistan”

The large-scale cultural action – the Week of Culture, which rich programme includes various events revealing the diversity of the national culture, is held in the northern region of the country. The second day events can be united by a conceptual idea – creativity in the course of the history. 

The second day of the Week started with the visit to sacred places. Workers of culture and art made a pilgrimage to the Mausoleum of Ashyk Aydyn Pir, a nurser of creative people located on the territory of Ruhubelent Etrap. Then forum participants visited the Kunya-Urgench State Historical and Cultural Complex. As is known, in 2005, the ruins of Kunya-Urgench were inscribed on the UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites. At present, there are over 20 architectural monuments of various epochs In Dashoguz Velayat. Each of them bears evidence of the former greatness of the capital of the ancient Turkmen state, a largest centre of the East. 

Forum participants visit the Mausoleum of Nadjmeddin Kubra – a recognized national place of pilgrimage, and the Dash Mosque – a museum of national crafts, from where the pilgrimage route to the Uch Yuz Altmysh Memorial Complex starts. Conference participants also visited the world-known mausoleums of Il-Arslan, Tekesh, Sultan-Ali, Turabek-Hanym, and other sights located on the territory of they unique reserve that is an integral part of the Turkmen people’s cultural heritage and the whole humanity as well. 

The solemn ceremony of opening of the International Conference of Art that brought together famous Turkmen painters, masters of the decorative and applied art as well as their foreign colleagues in Dashoguz took place at the Dashoguz Velayat Museum of Local History. 

Participants of the Week of Culture had an opportunity to see museum exhibits as well as to watch a documentary film dedicated to the ancient monuments of the northern region of our country and its modern tourist infrastructure. The film created by Turkmen cinematographers is the first part of a cycle “Trip to the history” as an excursion to the history of the national culture and art. 

In the evening, word painters from different countries gathered together in the improvised Turkmen village on the bank of the Shavat River to participate in the poetry readings. 

The second day of the Week of Culture in Dashoguz finished by mobile expositions and a big concert performed by masters of culture and art of Dashoguz and Mary Velayats at the Georogly Square. 

This day of the big creative holiday demonstrated that the contemporary national culture ha absorbed the best of the rich historical, literary, musical, and artistic heritage, folklore and crafts, traditions and customs of our people.


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