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Courtesy of 

Marylise Vigneau

Unity and Diversity


Marylise Vigneau

Little Stories of Phnom Penh

Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Little Stories of Phnom Penh These images tell the story of the second decade of our century when the deathly shadow of the Khmer Rouge began to fade and as Phnom Penh quickly moved towards a blazing, vibrant modernity. A lady in pyjamas strolls by a giant mushroom, young single people celebrate Valentine's Day with cut-out paper hearts, while a young boy stares down from a tree armed with a plastic head. Cambodia has seen so much that nothing is strange anymore. In the legend of the churning of the sea of milk, well-known in Cambodia as the archetypal story of creation and chaos, an elixir of eternal life emerges from the sea while, at the same time, sickly fumes spew out. Reality might be witty, inventive or mischievous despite a derelict or tragic background. This is particularly true in Phnom Penh, where different levels of reality blend into each other, building a unique crossover. These little stories of Phnom Penh are a play between fondness and irony, grace and kitsch, the inner and the strange.

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