Author: Sam Roberts

Painted Signs in Cambodia: An Exhibition

Press Release [PDF / Word] / Facebook Event Page Flying pigs, retro hairstyles and hand grenades are set to feature in this free exhibition celebrating the art and craft of Cambodia’s hand-painted advertising. The exhibition will feature a mixture of

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Sat Lo, Hitler and Chaplin in Cambodia

Cambodian sign depicting Adolf Hitler

This painted Cambodian sign, advertising a ‘Welder of Metal’, is certainly one of the most curious I have come across so far. I first heard about it when it was advertised for sale, here on Khmer 440 Cambodian Forums. It

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Signs of Cambodia in the Mekong Delta

While traveling in Vietnam after my time in Cambodia I was surprised to find few painted signs remaining on the streets. However, when I reached the the Mekong Delta in the far South, the density seemed to increase all of

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Cambodian Goddesses by Steve Tierney

Painted sign in Cambodia showing a beautiful woman

Notions of beauty are discussed in one of chapters in the book, provoked by the many painted signs in Cambodia for hair and makeup shops. The depictions of women on these signs varies considerably, although they are often portrayed with

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On the Screens of Cambodia’s Hand-Painted Signs

Hand-painted sign in Cambodia showing content on the picture of a screen.

Gordon sent me this picture that I never saw while researching the book, Hand-Painted Signs of Kratie. It is from Roka Kandal, just South of Kratie town, and reads ‘Repair Television, Tape Player, VCD’ (VCDs are Video CDs). Like Gordon

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Cambodian Shop Signs by Joel Montague

Joel Montague has recently made a brilliant addition to the published material on Cambodia’s hand-painted signs. ‘Cambodian Shop Signs: Free-Market Signage in a Post-Marxist Society‘ is a detailed account of the form, featuring over 80 colour images. It is the

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Writing and Videos about Hand-Painted Signs of Kratie

It’s now just over a year since I got on stage to deliver the above rapid-fire presentation for Nerd Night in Phnom Penh. There have also been a number of pieces in press about the book and my work which

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Flying Condoms and Bambi from Alex Diment

Hand-painted Cambodian sign about sexual health

I love these public information/social campaigns captured by Alex Diment during his time working on landmine issues in North-West Cambodia. First up is a sexual health campaign from Kampong Thom province suggesting that using condoms can be as fun as

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Natural Wonders on the West Bank of the Mekong

Hand-painted sign showing various animals at a watering hole

Soon after publishing Hand-Painted Signs of Kratie I took a tour to the West bank of the Mekong river. After living for two years on the East bank, where Kratie Town is situated, it was odd that I’d never been

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Hand-Painted Cambodian Truck

Hand-Panted Battambang Truck Full

My recent viewing of the excellent Horn Please movie reminded me of this discovery in Battambang which I made just before leaving Cambodia. While the trucks of India, Bangladesh and Brazil (to name a few) are consistently decorated in vibrantly

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Hand-Painted Cambodia at the Sign Design Society

Banteay Meanchey Rock Star

I am pleased to announce that I will be speaking at the Sign Design Society in London on the topic of Cambodia’s hand-painted advertising next month on the evening of Thursday, 6th June. Full details of the talk are contained

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Hand-painted Cambodian signs at trunkh.

Hand-painted Cambodian tailor sign for sale in trunkh.

The popularity of hand-painted signs in Cambodia seems to be increasing on a daily basis. During last week’s ‘road show’ to launch the book in Phnom Penh I learned of a new shop that, among many other things, is selling

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Guest post for Eye Magazine blog

Cambodian hand-painted sign for TV and watch repairs

Eye Magazine is a leading design publication and they kindly invited me to write a guest post about Cambodia’s hand-painted signs. This give a flavour of the book and features some of my favourite images, including the one above which

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An exhibition and book launch in Phnom Penh

Cambodian hand-painted signs advertising massage and hot stone treatments

After last month’s publication to the rest of the world, Hand-Painted Signs of Kratie is now coming to Cambodia. To celebrate its publication here there will be a number of events in Phnom Penh. Throughout this time, and beyond, the

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Another book: Carnet de rencontres au Cambodge: au fil des routes…

Cover of the book Carnet de rencontres au Cambodge

Hand-painted signs from Cambodia are clearly in vogue. This week I learned about the publication of another book on the topic, following Robert Joiner’s in 2005 and my own this month. The new book was launched with an exhibition in

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The Phnom Penh Look at Java Arts

Close-up of women depicted on a hand-painted beauty sign in Cambodia.

Cambodian hand-painted signs are clearly in vogue. Today sees the opening of the first of two exhibitions centred on the topic in Phnom Penh, the second being my own which will open on 4th December. (There is also the Fowler

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Koh Kong Blues

Hand-painted signs for a dentist in Koh Kong, Cambodia

We’ve currently got guests over from the UK and my wife has taken them to Koh Kong in the South West of the country from where she has sent this despatch of signs, all painted on blue in the traditional

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