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AIT ARTIST TALK #67: "Today of Yesterday"
Talk and Film Screening by Rattana Vandy and Kanitha Tith from Cambodia
Date: Wednesday, July 15th 2015, 19:00 - 21:00

Top Left: Rattana Vandy, Looking In My Office 7, 2006 / Top Right: Rattana Vandy, Surface, France, 2011
Bottom Left: Kanitha Tith, Season of Cambodia, Transparent Studio at Bose Pacia, NYC photo courtesy: Pete Pin Bottom Right: Kanitha Tith, "Endlessly"(2011), Photo by Heng Ravuth

'History, memory, time.'
An evening talk and video screening with two emerging artists from Cambodia.

Arts Initiative Tokyo [AIT] is pleased to present AIT ARTIST TALK #67 on Wednesday, July 15. Commencing at 7pm, the talk and video screening will be led by Rattana Vandy and Kanitha Tith, two Cambodian artists who are currently in Tokyo with the support of The Backers Foundation and AIT.

The event has been organised in conjunction with Vandy and Tith's exhibition,The BAR Vol.8 "Today of Yesterday", which will open on Saturday, July 11 at YAMAMOTO GENDAI.

A self taught photographer with a background in journalism, Rattana Vandy (b. 1980) is an artist working predominately with photography and video. As one of Cambodia's up-and-coming artists, Vandy has had his work featured in recent exhibitions including "TIME of OTHERS" at Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Contemporary Art and "dOCUMENTA(13)", and was also shortlisted for this year's Hugo Boss Asia Art Award. In his most recent video work, "MONOLOGUE", Vandy speaks to those who lost their lives during the reign of the Khmer Rouge, addressing the time and pain that have since been removed from history. Through a translation project that has been reviving Khmer-language philosophy and technical texts lost through the bookburning policies of the Pol Pot era, Vandy has been reflecting on memory and history.

Kanitha Tith (b. 1987) is an artist who produces works across a range of media including sculpture, performance and installation. As an artist that questions the stereotypical roles assigned to women in Cambodia and the loss of history and place under the weight of power and capitalism, Tith's previous works include "Season of Cambodia" (2013), an installation comprising wire sculptures and women's underwear, and "Heavy Sand" (2012), a performance in which she wore a bathing suit and showered in a mix of water and sand. In 2010, Tith received an honourable mention at the inaugural You Khin Memorial Women's Art Prize, an award that recognises contributions to improving the rights and social status of women in Cambodia.

While celebrating strong economic growth in recent years, Cambodia is a country where much remains buried in history and time. Throughout the evening, the artists will use their talk and video screening as the basis for taking a broader look at their country's social circumstances, while also shedding light on the thinking behind their practice.
We hope that you can join us for this insightful and thought-provoking evening.

*Also participating in The Backer's Foundation/AIT joint residency program is Marianna Dobkowska, a Polish curator who will arrive in Tokyo on July 7. Dobukousuka will also be presenting an evening talk on Wednesday, July 22. The event will be held in English only, with further information to be uploaded to the AIT website in the coming weeks.

Date and Time: Wednesday, July 15 2015, 19:00 - 21:00
Organized by: Arts Initiative Tokyo [AIT]
Co-Organized by: The Backers Foundation
Venue: AIT Room Daikanyama (Twin Bldg. Daikanyama B-403, 30-8 Sarugaku-cho, Shibuya-ku)
Twin Bldg. Daikanyama B-403, 30-8 Sarugaku-cho, Shibuya-ku
Capacity: 30. Booking Required.
Admission: JPY1000/JPY800: 'Base Members' and Students/Free: 'House Members' and 'Support Members'
Others: 1 free drink, talk will be in English with consecutive Japanese translation

Send an email with its subject as "AIT ARTIST TALK #67" to otoiawase@a-i-t.net, including your name, and contact.

[ Artists Biography ]

Rattana VANDY(Born in 1980 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia)
Rattana Vandy
Still from "MONOLOGUE", 2015, Single channel HD video, color, sound

Vandy lives and works between Phnom Penh, Paris and Taipei. In 2007, he was one of the co-founders of Stiev Selapak / Art Rebels, and in 2009 he was also one of the co-founders of Sa Sa Art Gallery. He contributed, in 2011, to establish SA SA BASSAC, the first dedicated exhibition spaces for contemporary art in Cambodia. Vandy Rattana began his photography practice in 2005 concerned with the lack of physical documentation accounting for the stories, traits, and monuments unique to his culture. His serial work employed a range of analog cameras and formats, straddling the line between strict photojournalism and artistic practice. His recent works mark a shift in philosophy surrounding the relationship between historiography and image making. For Vandy, photographs are now fictional constructions, abstract and poetic surfaces, histories of their own. He lately began interested in film-making. The short-film "MONOLOGUE" is his latest work. In 2014, he co-founded Ponleu Association, which aims to provide access to international reference books, through their translation and publication in Khmer. It also publishes its own books, focusing on various fields of knowledge (philosophy, literature, science, etc.)

Kanitha Tith (Born in 1987 in Phnom Pehn, Cambodia)
Kanitha Tith

Tith lives and works in Phnom Penh, she works revolves around the production of sculptures and installations that investigate the possible relationships between the artist's personal experience and memories and her environment, namely the fast-changing landscape of Cambodia. Her sculptural work made of woven metal strings are informed by her childhood memories and combine her interest in the relationship between human and non-human form with spatial strategies that straddle Tith's domestic sphere with the public arena. The material used by the artist - metal strings, found traditional cooking stoves or collected objects belonging to her neighbours - pertains to the realm of daily Cambodian material culture. By so doing, Tith questions the status of the artist and its potential to engage with issues of community, gender and women's identity. The artefacts created by Tith thus act as documents of the effects of the economic and social development in Cambodia on the private and urban spheres, on the individual and her environment, and formulate a visual poetics that evoke the possibility of change. Tith collaborates on film (with French-Cambodian filmmaker Chou Davy) and music (with the American Cambodian band Dengue Fever) projects and is active as a costume designer.

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