Here’s my caption for the piece:
“As an immigrant in the fast paced America, it’s becoming harder and harder to stay connected to the Khmer culture. That’s why it’s so important for Khmers to come together and help each other keep the connection strong. Similar to the dragon boat needing all of it’s paddlers to move together to race for the goal, our culture needs every Khmer to stay dedicated to preserving our culture.”
During the 2009 Khmer New Year celebration, I heard an announcement looking for artists to paint something about our Khmer culture because the municipality is having an APA Heritage Month Exhibit from late April to late May, and there was a segment about Khmer and Cambodia. SO! I jumped right to it. Although I got really short notice, I finished it in 3 days, which shows through because there are many things that I could improve on. In any case, I was able to get it in on time, and it was up in the 3rd floor lobby of the Seattle Municipal Tower for about 2 or 3 weeks. I was HAPPY!!! This is the first time my art has gone up any where outside of school!! I submitted a short bio of myself and the piece and everything! Sadly, I was unable to attend the reception because of class, but my piece on a public exhibit is pretty darn cool! Also, I submitted this piece for a publication in my university called the Matrix. The issue’s theme was “Identity & Culture” so I thought this was perfect!
I need to take a moment to say a special thank you to my high school art teacher, Ms. D! She’s so amazing! She hasn’t been my art teacher since high school (which at the time of this painting was 2 years past), but she was still very willing to help me with my art when I needed it!! Also, thanks to my friends for all the support and encouragement in those 3 stressful days! They had to deal a lot with my crankiness and frustrations.
All in all, this was an exciting piece for me. I was very passionate about dragon boat racing, so the subject matter was very personal. In addition, this was the first time my piece was shown outside of a school environment. However, I do wish I had more time with it to work on hand studies, body proportions, siting poses, etc. Plus, it would be nice if the people on the boat had life jackets! >_<
I hope you enjoyed reading about this painting. Until next time!!