Mirage Contemporary Art Space once again illustrated its mission to introduce and highlight the emerging Cambodian art scene. As part of their arresting exhibition of Unsaid Things, រឿងមិនអាចនិយាយ ការតាំងពិរពណ៏ដោយ – An Exhibition by Romcheik 5 Collective – they offered an artist talk with Bor Hak, from Romcheik 5. Bor Hak, a young artist still in his 20s stood quietly before the gathering of Khmer young people and Mirage enthusiasts to speak about his art and his life. He spoke in Khmer while Heng Darith interpreted in English. As he spoke about his personal life, the migrations of his artistic developments and his continued learning process, one thing was clear: Bor Hak has a tenderness born of strength. With quiet patience and an unspoken reverence for life and its creative urge, Bor Hak walked us through the many mediums he has explored and the arduous process of learning his craft and surviving a harsh life.

Bor Hak is one more example of Phare Ponleu Selpak‘s programs to nurture young Cambodians with education and exposure to diverse arts. Meeting him again and seeing more of his painting and woodworks will be a vital part of my next visit to Battambang and Romcheik 5.