What an incredible way to close the 10th Angkor Photo Festival & Festival! On December 6th, under the glow of the full moon, hundreds streamed onto the grounds of the riverside gardens across from the Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor to join us for our finale evening.
Beginning with the opening reception of the four exhibitions hosted on the grounds of the gardens, we welcomed Rubén Salgado Escudero who gave an insight to working on his series ‘Solar Portraits‘ in Myanmar. He was followed by contemporary Australian photographer Max Pam, who exhibited ‘Kailash‘, a reproduction of his handmade travel journal from a trip to Tibet in 1999.
Rounding up the event was John Novis, Head of Photography, and photographer Simon Lim from Greenpeace International, who shared their knowledge on the issues tackled in the two exhibitions, the group show ‘Coalification of Water‘ and ‘Inner Mongolia’ by famed Chinese photographer Lu Guang.
Following the reception, it was a chance for everyone to meet and mingle one last time during a sumptuous dinner buffet from Asian Square. Our official Wine Partner Les Celliers d’Asie and Beer Partner Cambodia Beer already on-site to cater to the growing crowd.
Soon, as guests settled onto seats or on the mats (generously provided by FCC Angkor), it was time to begin the night’s programme by starting with the final line-up of slideshow projections curated by Programme Coordinator Françoise Callier,
Next, it was time to reveal the awardees of the inaugural Hope Françoise Demulder Grant, which aims to provide participants of our professional workshops with financial support to continue their photography projects. It was smiles and cheers all round when we announced the names Mansi Thapliyal and Senthil Kumaran, who joined jury panel Scott Howes, Photo Editor of the Phnom Penh Post, and Françoise Callier on stage to receive their grant certificates.
Selected by a jury panel based on the strength of their submitted proposals as well as their photography skills, Mansi and Senthil will each receive 1,000 Euros in financial support to continue their photography projects. The grant is supported by Un Déclic Contre Une Claque, an association created in 2003 which aims to support journalists and photographers.
Finally, it was time to shine the spotlight on the tutors and participants of the 10th Angkor Photo Workshops. Each tutor received a gift bag courtesy of Les Celliers d’Asie, and was joined on stage by the participants who each received their hard-earned workshop certificates.
It had been a grueling and challenging week for all participants, and there was no better way to celebrate their experience than by a showcase of the amazing photo projects they produced in Siem Reap during the workshops.
The night continued on at the Festival & Workshop Center, and while spirits were high, it was saddening for all of us to have to say our goodbyes to close friends and new ones.
However, as frequent visitors to the festival know very well, it’s never farewell, but see you at the next edition (if not sooner)!