Celebrating art for animals’ sake

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The Phnom Paint community regularly holds Art Weekend workshops at the capital’s Party Patio Bar. Photo supplied

Called “Phnom Paint,” the international community for artists and creative people are inviting all art enthusiasts to participate in the upcoming charity art auction on Saturday evening at the German-Cambodian Cultural Centre of Phnom Penh, better known as Meta House.

Proceeds from the auction will be donated to Animal Rescue Cambodia, a non-profit organisation founded in 2016 by German-born Martina Mayr to care for the welfare of stray animals in Cambodia.

“We all have pet cats and dogs, and we have been treating animals for many years in a clinic that works with this NGO. We noticed that they are doing a great job and want to draw attention to their activities,” says organiser Vitaly Smyshlyaev.

Since its establishment in June of this year, the Phnom Paint art community has cultivated the tradition of creating a vibrant art scene in the Kingdom by regularly delivering art sessions to people of all ages and holding Art Weekend workshops at the capital’s Party Patio Bar.

The community believes that continued efforts to conduct art exhibitions and events are vital to keeping the urban art atmosphere alive.

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The auction will feature more than 30 artworks of students of the Art Weekend class in acrylic painting. The subjects mainly portray flowers, pets and romantic city views, which are perfect for modern interior decoration. Photo supplied

“The mission of the auction is two-fold. One is to create a vibrant art life in Phnom Penh and establish its presence on the art map. And the other is to draw attention to organisations helping abandoned animals on the streets,” Smyshlyaev says.

The auction will feature more than 30 artworks of students of the Art Weekend class in acrylic painting. The subjects mainly portray flowers, pets and romantic city views, which are perfect for modern interior decoration.

“We selected works that would be nice to hang on the walls of children’s rooms, kitchen and the bedroom.

“We will auction about 30 works and another 15 will be presented at a small exhibition in the lobby. All of them were made using acrylic on canvas.

“There are also several works made by professional artists. For most works, the opening bid will be between $20 and $30 while some will start at $50,” says Smyshlyaev.

He says that each auction participant will be given a catalogue of the works to be displayed for bidding.

Apart from welcoming the participation of people who share a love for art, the Phnom Paint community hopes that the pieces will go to the hands of generous bidders who also share the charitable cause of caring for Cambodia’s stray animals.

“All revenue minus our direct expenses from organising the event will be donated to the NGO Animal Rescue Cambodia,” says Smyshlyaev.

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On its plans for the future, he says Phnom Paint is planning to organise this event several times a year to create a platform where art lovers and animal lovers can collaborate for a greater cause.

“We plan to conduct such charity auctions once every three months. This will be a medium of communication between people who are interested in art and helping animals.

“The art and animal welfare communities belong in very different social circles, so events such as this is a good way to encourage communication between them. Producing works of art is impossible without a rich artistic environment and an interested audience,” he says.

The Phnom Paint Charity Art Auction will be held on Saturday at 5:00pm at the Meta House Phnom Penh located at No 47, Street 178, Daun Penh district, Phnom Penh.

The event will be hosted by Russian artist and Phnom Paint founder Olga Shklyar while the bidding process will be managed by American auctioneer Barbara Walsh.