Artist Sin Rithy named the oil painting “Unrealized.”
Surrounded by leaves, a man appears in the work as if he were coming out of the jungle. He is more a sketch than a person, with the contours of his face barely formed. His shape in deep blue and red nearly blends with the blue foliage and red background. Below him is a series of shapeless, blue-gray faces.
This is a painting of a human being yet to define himself. The 20-year-old artist said he made the work in a large format, 1.15 by 1.3 meters, to make people understand “how important it is to take care of themselves, to believe in themselves and get the support they need from the right persons.”
The work is part of Mr Rithy’s series “Beliefs.” This collection of 18 oil paintings will feature in an exhibition opening Thursday night at Villa Langka in Phnom Penh.
The name refers to religious beliefs and principles one should put into practice in daily life, he said. But it also is about belief in human beings, a reminder that people should have faith in themselves and, he noted, “to be careful before they trust a person.
“Some people trust too fast, and become vulnerable and hurt,” Mr Rithy said Friday. They may get exploited at work or even end up in sex trafficking because they believed the wrong people, he said, adding that to help get their self-respect back, they should reach out to those who can help them.
In one painting done in sedate blue, red and blue-gray, two persons are standing on each side of the work, their hands in the traditional Cambodian greeting, looking at a tree bearing fruit. Its title, “Yourself Limit Yourself,” speaks of the limitations people sometimes place on themselves.
In “The Candle and the Wind,” a person in search of himself is outlined holding a candle, surrounded by waves of energy radiating from the light and rendered in pale blue, gray and yellow lines.
This exhibition will be held until Nov 19 at Villa Langka, No 14, Street 282.